'There is a gator eating a man!' 911 calls reveal panic when alligator attacks 85-year-old man

LAKELAND, Fla. — Deputies have released frightening new accounts from the moment an 85-year-old man was attacked by an alligator.

Polk County deputies released 911 calls from both the man’s wife and a witness who saw it happen.

“An alligator attacked my husband! He’s behind the bush bleeding!” the man’s wife told a 911 dispatcher Monday. The attack happened at Big Cypress Golf and Country Club in Lakeland.


Officers from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission said the gator bit George Ihle’s foot at a pond. The man was taken to the hospital. He did not lose his foot, FWC said.

People who witnessed the attack were horrified.

“There is a gator eating a man! I guess the gator pulled him… There’s a gator eating a man!” another 911 caller said.

FWC said Ihle managed to get away from the gator and hide while he waited for help.

While Ihle was rushed to the hospital, FWC caught the gator and found the man's shoe inside its mouth.

WATCH LIVE: Deputies and FWC officials at scene of gator attack

A man was hospitalized after being bitten by an alligator at a 55+ community in Lakeland. https://at.wftv.com/2QzQCW9

Posted by WFTV Channel 9 on Monday, December 3, 2018

Ihle is expected to recover. The Polk County Sheriff’s Office released a picture of Ihle getting a hospital visit from the deputies who helped him that day.

The gator that attacked Ihle will be euthanized.

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