A 13-year-old Seminole County girl's dream to run in the Junior Olympics is on hold because of a violent shark attack in Cocoa Beach.
Alysa Whetro was bitten Sunday while swimming in waist-deep water off the coast of Cocoa Beach to celebrate her birthday.
"When it bit me, I felt like a pain, like a sharp pain and then I pulled my foot up," Alysa said.
The attack was so quick that all Alysa, who is part of the central Florida Gliders track team, saw was a pool of blood next to her.
"My whole foot was covered in blood when I first pulled it up," she said.
"The worst things go through your mind," said Alysa's father, Dewann Whetro. "The hope that it's not your kid, their leg is missing, their foot is missing, their arm is missing, they're dead, you know?"
Alysa's father was down the beach when he noticed a crowd gathering around his daughter.
"In a horror movie, in that moment when they open the door and it's complete fright, that is what she looked like," he said.
But unlike other horror movies, Alysa's story has a happy ending.
The track star is getting a unique surgery that will put a graft from an umbilical cord on her Achilles tendon to help her get back on her feet.
The crutches may be stopping her from running in this summer's Junior Olympics, but they're not stopping her sense of humor.
The middle schooler got a temporary tattoo of a shark right above her injuries.
"Everybody was asking what happened and then some people didn't believe it so I showed them the picture of it and they were like, 'Oh, you actually did get bit by a shark,'" she said.
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