Life

Louisiana Man Presumed Dead After He was Attacked By an Alligator in Hurricane Ida Floodwaters

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An elderly Louisiana man is now missing and believed to be dead after authorities say he was attacked by an alligator in floodwaters caused by Hurricane Ida.

The 71-year-old man, who was not identified, was attacked by the gator at around noon on Monday outside his home in the city of Slidell, officials said.

The man was walking through floodwaters caused by the monster hurricane when the animal attacked, the victim’s wife told the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office.

“She told deputies she was inside her residence when she heard a commotion and went outside to see a large alligator attacking her husband,” the wife told authorities, the sheriff’s office said in a statement.

The sheriff’s office added that the woman “immediately ran to her husband’s aid in an attempt to stop the attack.”

Once the alligator stopped the attack, the woman pulled her husband out of the floodwaters and went inside the couple’s home to get medical supplies, authorities said.

“When she returned and realized the severity of his injuries, she immediately got into her pirogue [a long, narrow canoe] and went to higher ground, which was approximately a mile away, to get help,” the sheriff’s office said.

But, when she returned, “her husband was no longer lying on the steps,” according to authorities.

The St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office used high water vehicles and flatboats in an attempt to locate the man, but he has not yet been found.

Meanwhile, Sheriff Randy Smith warned residents “to be extra vigilant with walking in flooded areas as wildlife has been displaced as well during this storm and alligators and other animals may have moved closer into neighborhoods.”