10-year-old shark attack victim thanks rescuers with lei, gifts - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

10-year-old shark attack victim thanks rescuers with lei, gifts and hugs

Ten-year-old shark attack victim, Raymond Senensi, returned to Makaha Beach on Friday to thank his rescuers. Ten-year-old shark attack victim, Raymond Senensi, returned to Makaha Beach on Friday to thank his rescuers.
MAKAHA, OAHU (HawaiiNewsNow) -

Two days after he was attacked by a shark while bodyboarding, 10-year-old Raymond Senensi returned to Makaha Beach on Friday to thank the people who rescued him.

"Ray Ray" said he wanted to personally thank the oceangoers and lifeguards who rushed to his aid in the water and on shore.

Sitting in a wheelchair on the beach, "Ray Ray" still had open wounds on his right thigh and lower leg, but was in good spirits.

Mike Ward, who caught the attack on his GoPro, bent down to talk to Senensi.

"Can I say a little prayer for you?" he asked.

Off-duty lifeguard Kelly Krohne heard Ray Ray's screams for help. Ward and Krohne were able to quickly get to Senensi, who was about 60 yards offshore of Makaha Beach in the breaking waves.

"One of the tougher kids I've seen in my life," Krohne said of the fourth grader.

Lifeguard Miguel Baez couldn't believe "Ray Ray" was already out of the hospital and getting around.  

"It's remarkable," he said.

The group exchanged lei and gifts -- and, of course, took selfies.

Family members said "Ray Ray" had held up well since the attack, even telling his mom not to cry. But seeing all the people who helped him brought the tough, 10-year-old to tears.

"Thank you guys," he said, choking back tears as lifeguards told him to be strong and hang in there.

After the exchanges of gifts and lei, Ray Ray stared at the ocean for a few seconds. When asked what he was thinking, he answered, "Scary."

Senensi doesn't know how long it will be before he goes back to his daily, after-school body boarding sessions, but the lifeguards told him they'd be there when he does.

"I'll be waiting for you when you return," said one. "See you in the water," said another.

There is still one more person "Ray Ray" wants to thank: the paramedic who was also on shore.

That paramedic wasn't working Friday, so another reunion is in the works.

Friends are also collecting "get well" cards and stuffed animals for Ray Ray. If you'd like to participate, contact Waianae resident Inez Larson at 457-7202.

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