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Victim of Ocracoke shark attack expected to recover

People surround and attend to a 68-year-old man that was bit by a shark in waist-deep water off Ocracoke Island, N.C., Wednesday, July 1, 2015. The man suffered wounds to his ribcage, lower leg, hip and both hands as he tried to fight off the shark.
People surround and attend to a 68-year-old man that was bit by a shark in waist-deep water off Ocracoke Island, N.C., Wednesday, July 1, 2015. The man suffered wounds to his ribcage, lower leg, hip and both hands as he tried to fight off the shark. Charlotte

Andrew Costello, the 68-year-old man attacked by a shark on Ocracoke Island Wednesday, will need several more surgeries but is expected to make a full recovery.

Costello thanked National Park Service lifeguards and medical personnel in a statement released late Thursday. He said he feels lucky to have survived the “frightening and painful” attack.

Eric Toschlog, one of Costello’s doctors at Vidant Medical Center in Greenville, said a team of surgeons met Costello after he was airlifted off the beach. A shark bite on his thigh was “major, but non-lethal” and he is in good condition as of Thursday, Toschlog said in a statement.

The shark, which was six to seven feet long, attacked Costello just after noon Wednesday while he swam with his adult son in the National Park Service day-use area on Ocracoke.

N.C. has seen seven shark attacks since June 11.

Wester: 704-358-5169

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