‘I am so incredibly lucky to be alive’: Woman mauled by bear in her home
ORINDA, Calif. (KPIX) - A Californian woman is grateful to be alive after she was attacked in her home by a bear.
“A bear mauling is not a little thing,” Laurel-Rose Von Hoffman-Curzi said. “It’s huge.”
Von Hoffman-Curzi has dozens of stitches in her face, deep lacerations on her chest and arms, and puncture wounds all over her torso after she was mauled by a bear early Saturday morning in her family’s Tahoe Vista cabin.
She said it all started when she heard banging in the kitchen and went to investigate.
“I could see the freezer door half open ... And it was like in an instant, ‘Oh my gosh. This is a bear,” she said. “And the next thing that happens is that I’m being torn apart.”
Von Hoffmann-Curzi said she was blocking the door where the bear came in, and she thinks the bear mauled her so it could get back out.
“I’m screaming the whole time. Screaming at the top of my lungs,” she said.
The bear easily outweighed Von Hoffman-Curzi by about 400 or 500 pounds, according to Ann Bryant, the director of the BEAR League.
Experts said the bear could have easily killed her and unfortunately, black bears are becoming more of a problem in Tahoe.
“We call it getting friendlier because what they actually are doing is they are getting more comfortable around people,” Bryant said.
Recently a bear was spotted going into Safeway to get food then into a convenience store, not seeming to be bothered by the cashier trying to shoo it away.
Von Hoffman-Curzi said she often spotted bears around her cabin but never imagined she’d come face to face with one in her kitchen, especially at a time when she’s battling stage 4 non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
“I am so incredibly lucky to be alive, I mean, no question,” she said.
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