FREDERICK, Md. - A Maryland woman is out of the hospital after being ferociously attacked by a bear last week.
On the night of Nov. 16, Karen Osborne left her house in Frederick to walk next door to her daughter's home to see why the family dog was barking. As she headed out in the dark, she unknowingly walked between a full grown female black bear and her three cubs.
“I really didn’t think I was going to make it,” she said.
Osborne suffered a black eye, a broken arm, a broken pelvis, four broken teeth and bite marks all over her body after coming face-to-face with an angry black bear.
“I heard this horrendous growling and I turned to look at it and the bear came out on two feet, and she grabbed me by my face and she threw me to ground,” described Osborne. “Then she came around behind me and grabbed my arm and bit it in half – literally.”
The bear came at her four separate times from three different directions for about 35 minutes.
“Then she came back around again and grabbed the top of my head with her teeth and then she started to try and go for my neck and I [put my hand in a fist] to kind of protect my neck, so I hit her four times,” she said. “I tried to hit her really hard to get to go away and it didn’t work. And then she came around another time – the last time she attacked me – and put her paw on my back and kept trying to bite at me. Every time I moved, she would start to come and attack me. I could feel her breath. I think she stopped because she was tired.”
Curled up in the fetal position on her daughter's driveway, Osborne finally felt her phone under her leg and managed to call 911.
“People have said you were so calm and collected, and I said, ‘No, that was resolve,’” said Osborne. “I knew I was dying. I mean, I was bleeding out. I could feel my energy leaving me.”
On the morning after the attack, Maryland Department of Natural Resources tracked and killed the bear. Osborne is upset they did not act sooner. She said there have been a number of nuisance calls reported by the neighborhood about that bear. She is now worried that three cubs have been left in the area to forage for food on their own.”
“I'm a little concerned about that decision, but I understand they are trying to set up a meeting or something to discuss this with the neighborhood,” she said.
Osborne said she is considering legal action against the Maryland Department of Natural Resources, which she feels didn’t do enough to protect the neighborhood from a bear it knew was causing problems.
The 63-year-old woman has a lot of rehab in front of her. But she said with this being a holiday week, she also realizes she has much to be thankful for.
“I'm happy to be here,” she told us.