15-Year-Old Surfer Killed by Shark in New South Wales

In early June, 60-year-old Rob Pedretti was hit by a 3-meter white shark at South Kingscliff Beach and died on the scene. This last Friday, that nightmare replayed itself when 15-year-old Mani Hart-Deville was attacked at Wooli Beach, roughly 220km south.

Hart-Deville was surfing with friends on a beautiful, clear afternoon at a wave called Wilsons Headland when the attack happened. “I talked to one of the surfers and basically he said he was in the water and a really big great white shark came up and took a bite and [he] was screaming out,” local resident Helen Dobra told 9 News. “The surfer said the shark then came in again for another attack. He said another surfer bravely went and tried to get the shark off and then they pulled [him] out of the water.”

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Unfortunately, the injury to Hart-Deville’s legs was so severe that—despite the best lifesaving efforts—he died on the scene. The NSW Department of Primary Industries later confirmed it was a great white shark based on photographs, and will be setting drumlines in an attempt to capture the shark.

While it’s impossible to know why Hart-Deville was attacked, in the 9 News piece above, a local fisherman reports that a school of salmon was moving through the Wooli area. “And even last night I didn’t want to stay down here,” the unnamed man says. “The place just felt haunted to me, and I’ve been coming here all my life.”

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Whatever the cause, it’s terrible reporting news like this twice in a month. Our thoughts and condolences go out to Hart-Deville, his family and everyone who knew him.

This article originally appeared on Surfer.com and was republished with permission.

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