After a bear unexpectedly attacked him in his home’s garage, a guy in Pennsylvania claims he is now much more aware of his surroundings.
On the evening of July 27, John Swartz, 60, and his wife Lori, 59, were watching TV at their residence outside of Danville when he realized he needed to shut off a hose he had left running to fill an inflatable pool.
Unaware that a bear had just stepped in a minute earlier, he entered the two-car garage where the shutoff valve was.
He claimed that the moment he heard a growl, he was flung against a shelf and instantly recognized it as a bear.
The bear bit him on the head as he turned to run. He stumbled back toward the home while holding his hurt head, but later CCTV footage revealed a second encounter with the animal.
He told The Sunbury Daily Item, “Thankfully, the bear didn’t retaliate when I tripped over him. He tried to stop the bleeding while his wife, who had heard a scream, greeted him at the door and immediately dialed 911.
He watched the tall, skinny animal that weighed 250 pounds (114 kilograms) amble by their RV while he was waiting for the paramedics.
His head injuries at the hospital were determined to be superficial bite marks. A Pennsylvania Game Commission officer removed his shirt, which had two sizable paw prints on the shoulders, for DNA testing. In an effort to capture the animal, the game commission also set up a trap that was baited with doughnuts.
According to John Swartz, “It’s very understandable as to why it did what it did.” I surprised it; its only escape route was through me.
He and his wife are now much more cautious when returning home after dark. Before going outdoors, we now look pretty good, he said. “I’m careful, especially if it’s after 8:30.”