Name: Chase Edwards
Lives in: North Park
Favorite surfing buddy: Jameson, his son
Girls in the water okay?: “If they can keep up.”
Chase was surfing at Playas de Tijuana last summer when he was bitten by a shark.
“I was just floating on my board and I felt a sharpness on my leg,” says Chase, a San Diego local who has been trekking down to Mexico for ten years. “I thought I hit some glass, but then I saw how much blood was in the water. I saw a dark shape dart by me and I fell off my board. I felt another bite on my leg and realized it was a shark. I kicked at it and made contact and it came at me again. I thrust my board down at it and then it swam off. I didn’t realize how hurt I was until I tried to kick and couldn’t move my leg; I ended up floating in.”
A few surfers on the beach witnessed the attack and helped Chase. Seventy-five stitches later, he was told that it was probably a hammerhead shark that had attacked him. He saved the tooth that was left in his leg; the 17-inch-long scar, another reminder, is now covered in a tattoo of coral.
“I have to say that this injury has totally changed my outlook on surfing. My biggest pet peeve is people who approach the ocean like it’s their playground instead of a living organism that will eventually respond to us….
“I’ve gotten some flak from other parents that see my son and I in the water, and I really want to tell them to mind their own business. I know the dangers involved with surfing, but I also know how beneficial it has been to me.”