Two Wyoming college wrestlers were seriously injured when they were ambushed in a grizzly attack by a grizzly bear while hunting over the weekend.
The incident occurred Saturday in Cody, Wyoming, when the two men encountered the bear at close range while in cover as they were hunting horns west of the Bobcat Houlihan Trail in Shoshone National Forest, the Wyoming game. & Fish Department said in a press release detailing the incident.
One of the men said he jumped on the grizzly bear to try and get it off his friend, Brady Lowry. “I grabbed him and pulled hard by the ear,” Kendall Cummings told Cowboy State Daily in a heartbreaking account of the gory attack.
“I could feel when his teeth hit my skull, I could feel when he bit my bones and they creaked,” Cummings continued.
The two men were somehow able to break free from the attack and call 911 which elicited an immediate response from both Park County Search and Rescue and Wyoming Game personnel. & Fish Department.
“With the assistance of a local hunter, a local resident and other members of their group, the two men were able to reach the start of the trail where they encountered the search and rescue and were transported from the area.” , the Wyoming Game said & Fish Department.
One of the victims was transported by helicopter to a local hospital while the other was transported by an ambulance, authorities said.
Both men, wrestling teammates at Northwest College in Powell, Wyoming, allegedly underwent multiple surgeries after suffering severe lacerations to the body and face. Lowry has a broken arm, reports say.
“Special thanks to Park County Search and Rescue and the Park County Sheriff’s Office for their quick response and rescue coordination,” said Dan Smith, Cody Region Wildlife Supervisor.
An investigation into the attack is underway, but authorities say this appears to be a “sudden and surprise encounter with a grizzly bear”.
Officials added that there has been “an abundance of bear activity at low altitudes” across the region in recent weeks and urged people to use great caution in the area where the attack took place.
“In the vicinity of the attack, reports from landowners and hunters indicate that there may be six to 10 different bears moving between agricultural fields and low-lying slopes,” Smith said. “Game and Fish will continue to monitor bear activity in the area and will work with the US Fish and Wildlife Service to make management decisions in the best interest of public safety.”
“This is a sad and unfortunate situation, we wish both victims a speedy and complete recovery,” added Smith.
For now, however, both Lowry and Cummings are counting their blessings and consider themselves lucky to have survived the attack.
“I don’t know what I’ll pay him back, I don’t know. I owe him everything, Brady Lowry told Cowboy Daily Press about Cummings’ quick actions that potentially saved his life. “We will be best friends for the rest of our lives.”