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"We thank God that he didn’t take his life," Ren Weiskopf said of his son Jay

By Joelle Goldstein
March 23, 2021 04:17 PM
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A 9-year-old boy is recovering after his family says he was attacked by a shark during their vacation to Florida.

Kristine and Ren Weiskopf are still shaken up after their son Jay's encounter with the shark but said they're feeling grateful that things didn't turn out worse, ABC affiliate WPLG reported.

"I just love him so much. He's such a great kid and we're still in shock, but thankful," Ren told the outlet. "We thank God that he didn't take his life, that he's gonna be OK."

The frightening ordeal unfolded on Sunday in Miami Beach, where the Minnesota-based family was visiting for vacation, according to WPLG.

Kristine told the outlet that she and Jay were in the water only for a few minutes when the attack suddenly happened.

"I was holding his hand the whole time and he was kind of body surfing a little bit and he had fallen on his stomach," Kristine told WPLG.

The Minnesota mom went on to explain that she pulled her son up from the waves when she realized a chunk of Jay's skin was missing from his shoulder.

"He just said, 'Ow,' and I looked down and there was about a four-foot gray shark just kinda swimming away, so I just scooped him up and ran him up the beach," Kristine told WPLG.

After safely bringing her son to shore, officials with Miami Beach Fire Rescue arrived at the scene and treated Jay, the outlet reported.

The boy was later transported to Jackson Memorial Hospital, where he underwent surgery to close his shoulder wound, according to WPLG.

Though Jay is now recovering, the Weiskopfs told the outlet that doctors are concerned about the potential of future infections, as well as the long-term effects that his injury may have on his mobility.

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However, because Jay is so young, doctors believe that the boy's prognosis will be good, WPLG reported.

"He just wants to go home and it's really sad because we had so much fun planned," Kristine explained to the outlet of her son.

In the wake of the incident, the Weiskopfs said they hope others in the area can learn from Jay's experience and that the appropriate action will be taken.

"What I don't like right now is that the beach is still open, and kids are still down there playing, and they are in the same spot where my son just got attacked," Ren told WPLG. "I don't know if it's just because of spring break or whatever, but the beach should be closed."