'I thought he was going to die': UCF student shark bite victim receives love, support from community

A UCF student who was bitten by a shark in July is finally back on his feet with the community surrounding him.

Chris Pospisil was bitten by a shark in July in New Smyrna Beach. The shark bit his foot while surfing and severed seven tendons and the shark's tooth was lodged in his bone.

The UCF student is not only celebrating his 22nd birthday on Saturday but also his recovery efforts as he can finally walk again after doctors told him he couldn't use his injured foot for 8 weeks.

"Me and my mom were talking the other night like this could have been a very different birthday and that kind of hit me hard," said Chris Pospisil. "Because there’s a chance I couldn’t have been here right now." 

His mom said she's so thankful he's alive because he could have bled out.

"I saw it and I lost it. I thought he was going to die," Victoria Pospisil said thinking back to that day.

His friends and family threw him a fundraiser to help with medical bills on Saturday, which have been piling up. The Iron Oak in Melbourne had live music and a raffle to raise money.

"There’s been ups and downs, I’m anxious to get in the water and live a normal life but when people come visit me it means the world to me," said Chris Pospisil. 

Chris still has months of recovery and physical therapy left before he can get back on a surf board, but he's working toward that goal.

"He’ll get back in the ocean. It’s really important for people to understand that you can’t live in fear. If you love doing something it’s important to do it," Victoria added.