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Stingray kills sunbathing woman in Fla


deathdawg
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MARATHON, Fla. (AP) Officials say a Michigan woman died after a stingray jumped out of the water and struck her in the upper body in the Florida Keys.

Wildlife officials say the spotted eagle ray hit the 55-year-old woman in the face or neck while she was in a boat with her family Thursday. Her name and hometown aren't being released yet.

Officials say it's not clear whether the animal's barb struck her, or if the impact killed her. It's also not clear how big it was.

Spotted eagle rays can grow up to 17 feet in length, weigh up to 500 pounds and have a wingspan of up to 10 feet.

They are known to occasionally jump out of the water but are not aggressive and use the venomous tip at the end of their tail as a defense mechanism.

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alfred e. neuman (3/20/2008)
octoslash (3/20/2008)
I need to check into this story, seeing as how the article failed to mention if the woman is an Obama supporter.
If she was an Obama supporter, she would have been walking on water when the ray hit her. ;)

Oh boy.....I'm gettin' outta here:pinch:

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they said it was 75lbs.. Stingray Kills Woman on Boat in Fla.

MARATHON, Fla. A 75-pound stingray killed a Michigan woman Thursday when it flew out of the water and struck her face as she rode a boat in the Florida Keys, officials said.

Judy Kay Zagorski, of Pigeon, Mich., was sitting in the front seat of a boat going 25 mph when the spotted eagle ray, with a wingspan of 5 to 6 feet, leaped out of the water, said Jorge Pino, spokesman for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.

The 57-year-old woman's father was driving the boat on the Atlantic Ocean side of Vaca Key, Pino said.

"He had absolutely no warning. It just happened instantaneously," Pino said.

The collision knocked Zagorski backward onto the floor of the boat, Pino said.

The impact likely killed the woman, and she did not appear to have puncture wounds from the ray's barb, Pino said. An autopsy is planned, Pino said.

Zagorski's sister was standing next to her when the stingray appeared but was not injured, Pino said.

The stingray landed in the 25-foot boat and died from the impact, officials said.

Spotted eagle rays can weigh 500 pounds and have a wingspan of up to 10 feet. They are known to occasionally jump out of the water but are not aggressive and use the venomous barb at the end of their tail for defense.

The rays are protected in Florida waters and are typically seen swimming on the water's surface.

"Rays jump to escape a predator, give birth and shake off parasites," said Lynn Gear, supervisor of fishes and reptiles at Theater of the Sea in Islamorada. "They do not attack people."

In 2006, a South Florida man was also critically injured when a stingray flopped into his boat and stung him. James Bertakis, 82, of Lighthouse Point, underwent surgery because the stingray left a foot-long barb in his heart. He has since recovered.

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SacFalcFan (3/20/2008)
they said it was 75lbs.. Stingray Kills Woman on Boat in Fla.

MARATHON, Fla. A 75-pound stingray killed a Michigan woman Thursday when it flew out of the water and struck her face as she rode a boat in the Florida Keys, officials said.

Judy Kay Zagorski, of Pigeon, Mich., was sitting in the front seat of a boat going 25 mph when the spotted eagle ray, with a wingspan of 5 to 6 feet, leaped out of the water, said Jorge Pino, spokesman for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.

The 57-year-old woman's father was driving the boat on the Atlantic Ocean side of Vaca Key, Pino said.

"He had absolutely no warning. It just happened instantaneously," Pino said.

The collision knocked Zagorski backward onto the floor of the boat, Pino said.

The impact likely killed the woman, and she did not appear to have puncture wounds from the ray's barb, Pino said. An autopsy is planned, Pino said.

Zagorski's sister was standing next to her when the stingray appeared but was not injured, Pino said.

The stingray landed in the 25-foot boat and died from the impact, officials said.

Spotted eagle rays can weigh 500 pounds and have a wingspan of up to 10 feet. They are known to occasionally jump out of the water but are not aggressive and use the venomous barb at the end of their tail for defense.

The rays are protected in Florida waters and are typically seen swimming on the water's surface.

"Rays jump to escape a predator, give birth and shake off parasites," said Lynn Gear, supervisor of fishes and reptiles at Theater of the Sea in Islamorada. "They do not attack people."

In 2006, a South Florida man was also critically injured when a stingray flopped into his boat and stung him. James Bertakis, 82, of Lighthouse Point, underwent surgery because the stingray left a foot-long barb in his heart. He has since recovered.

Talk about bad karma, that is a FREAK accident.

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pencilpusher (3/21/2008)
If you live in Michigan, seriously..you don't expect to die by a stingray.

It probably never crossed her mind. I lived in Florida in my teens (HS years) and was in the Gulf nearly every week, I never imagined something like this... I can't recall ever hearing of someone dying by stingray assault, especially while riding in a moving boat!

weird, just weird. What a sad way to die.

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I just went tuna fishing lastw wednesday in the gulf PIRATED VIDEO IS ILLEGAL, when we saw this humongous creature in the water. First we thought it was a great white, then we got where we could see better and the first person on the boat who could make it out, said "that's not a great white its a manatee!!"" I said what the hel* is a manatee doing 50 miles off the coast???? ( NC)........I said that's a manta ray!! we laughed, but the captain, said "we should get to close those guys jump out the water and harm boats!!

 I swear it was the size of a school bus!!!

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