Abigail Wetherell is lucky to be alive.
The tween was running on a dirt trail in the woods behind her grandfather’s cabin in Cadillac, Michigan,when she says a black bear began running after her. Before she knew what was happening, Abby was being badly mauled by the bear.
CFNews 13 reports that in an interview with the Associated Press, the seventh grader revealed that she was quite sure that she was going to die in the animal attack. “This is it,” she recalls thinking, “I'm not going to live, I'm going to die right here.”
Abby describes the bear running after her and “taking her down,” clawing her for a while, then “going off,” which is when she tried to make her escape, only to have the bear run after her and tackle her to the ground again. Finally, the bear did leave Abby, and a neighbor who heard her screams rescued her and took her to the hospital, where Abby received over 100 stitches and underwent surgery. After sustaining deep cuts in her back and left thigh, Abby is now recovering at home.
Michigan’s Department of Natural Resources say they don’t know what provoked the bear to attack and they have set traps for the animal, hoping to catch it so that it can be tested for diseases. Although a 300-pound black bear was caught in the vicinity recently, authorities are not certain whether it’s the same one that mauled Abby.