A woman in Florida is recovering after she was stung in the back by a venomous stingray, which narrowly missed piercing her lungs.
The earth is a beautiful and wondrous place filled with expansive, snow-covered mountain ranges, vast deserts and sparkling, breathtaking oceans. Each of those areas comes with cute creatures that call them home. Some of those critters are more friendly and welcoming than others. One woman in central Florida found that out the hard way.
Kristie Cataffo-O'Brien and her husband, who live in the Tampa Bay area, decided to get out and do what many Floridians and tourists do when they visit the Sunshine State: visit the beach. Kristie and her husband went to Bahia Beach in order to grab a bite to eat and enjoy the water, according to WFLA.
However, their fun beach outing was soon disturbed by an unexpected encounter with one of the ocean’s inhabitants.
The outlet reports that Kristie and her husband were standing in the ocean, in approximately knee-deep water, when she instantly felt the stingray plunge its barbs into her back.
Kristie leaned back, attempting to wet her hair in the ocean when she felt the pain, according to a GoFundMe page set up for her.
"I felt something sting me right away. I felt like it was a jellyfish maybe or something, but it was super, super painful," Kristie told WFLA.
To make matters worse, the slightest movement made the stingray react, inflicting further pain on Kristie, according to People.
Her husband tried to keep her calm following the attack.
“He was like, ‘Stay still, don’t move,”‘ Kristie told WFLA.
The Barb in Her Back Was 3 Centimeters Away from Hitting Her Lung
"The stingray was moving and flopping around. And anytime there was a wave or anything moved, I could feel the barb just driving into my back," Kristie said.
About an hour later, 45 minutes after 911 was called, first responders arrived on the scene. Kristie was rushed to the hospital and taken into surgery, WFLA reports.
It was later determined that the barb was approximately three inches deep into the muscle of her upper back. It missed striking her lung by 3 centimeters, according to the GoFundMe page.
Kristie has since been released from the hospital and is recuperating at home. The GoFundMe page indicates she may have suffered nerve damage but added "it is too soon to tell."
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Kristie and her husband could use all the prayers they can get as she recovers from the attack.
"In the same way, the spirit also helps our weaknesses, for we don't know how to pray as we ought. But the Spirit himself makes intercession for us with groanings which can't be uttered." – Romans 8:26
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Featured Image Credit: YouTube.com/WFLA