EXCLUSIVE: Maui shark bite victim speaks

Riglos: Incident haunts him mentally

Published  11:10 AM HST Nov 08, 2012
KAHULUI, Hawaii -

A Kahului man says he still wakes up in the middle of the night after a shark almost killed him.

It happened Sunday in waters off Maui.  Marc Riglos' foot is starting to heal.

"I can wiggle my toes, but not upwards because all the ligaments from the top side is all ripped off," said Riglos.

He and a friend were diving about 300 yards offshore in Wailuku, when Marc felt something bite and then pull him under.

"I turned around and look -- what the hell is that?  A big tiger (shark) chomping on my fin," said Riglos.

Instinct took over.

"I started whacking him with my hand," said Riglos.  "I was scared. Thought I was going to die out there."

The shark soon disappeared, but it left its mark -- physically and mentally.

"I still have a hard time sleeping.  I wake up every hour.  I feel myself like whacking the fish.  I catch myself doing this sometimes," said Riglos.

Doctors will perform more surgery this week to repair his torn ligaments.  His recovery could take months.

"They don't know what kind of bacteria the shark get.  Plus, get bacteria in the water.  Was in the salt water for a while," said Riglos.

Marc first said he wouldn't dive after the attack, but now says he'll slowly work his way back to diving again.

A Bank of Hawaii donation account has been set up for anyone who'd like to help Marc and his girlfriend who's three months pregnant.  You can walk into any Bank of Hawaii branch in the state and make a deposit to the Marc Riglos Fund.

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