September 17, 2013
Hunter Mauled After Tracking Wounded Grizzly Into Thicket
By Ben Romans
Last Monday, John O. Matson Jr. of Charlestown, Rhode Island approached what he assumed was a dead grizzly bear he shot a while on a hunting trip in Alaska, but was instead attacked by the animal, leaving him with severe wounds to his head and legs.
According to the Washington Post, Matson didn’t wish to speak with reporters about his ordeal, but allowed his father to speak on his behalf. He says his son was hunting with two others from Rhode Island, stalked a bear eating berries, shot it and watched it run into some brush. After waiting 90 minutes, Matson tracked the animal into a thicket, but the bear, apparently only wounded, attacked.
The other two hunters stood a short distance away and heard Matson scream and fire his weapon, and the bear ran off after they fired shots at the animal. Matson was bleeding profusely from the head, but back at their hunting camp, his friends were able to use clothing to help stop the bleeding. Bad weather prevented a flight from reaching the hunter’s camp until the next day when rescuers flew Matson 225 miles to an Anchorage Hospital, where he is listed in fair condition.