A 78-year-old man in the North Carolina mountains claims to have punched a mother black bear in her nose when she wandered onto his driveway.
Sonny Pumphrey told local WLOS News that a mother bear showed up Tuesday with her two cubs outside his home near Waynesville, North Carolina. The two cubs ran way, but the mother charged after him, Pumphrey recounted. (RELATED: Hunters Sue New Jersey After First-Year Governor Bans Black Bear Hunting)
“She made a charging dead run at me. That sucker was eyeball-to-eyeball to me,” he said.
He then reportedly punched the black bear in the nose, who then bit Pumphrey in the hip.
She kind of shook me a little bit, and I’m still … I’m hitting her steady on the top of the head just as hard as I could swing, man, for dear life. I just continue pounding and pounding and pounding and she’s continuing trying to bite me. And like I said, she got a hold of me and then shook me a little bit, then she let go and she took a swat at me. And when she took a swat at me she knocked me about eight feet over on the concrete.
Hearing the commotion, Pumphrey’s wife, Betty, rushed out with a gun and fired it in the air. At length, the bear slunk away, and Betty called 911. “We have a lot to be thankful for because we were both very, very lucky,” Betty said. (RELATED: Activists ‘Stood There Crying’ While Filming A Dying Polar Bear, Then Blamed Global Warming)
Pumphrey will be getting a series of rabies shots as a precaution. Wildlife authorities tried but failed to locate the bear, who is still at large.