December 6, 2023

A victim of a shark attack while snorkeling in Egypt, she told her husband “I’ll be back for a moment,” moments before she was wounded.

The Austrian woman, who died after her arm and leg were ripped off near the popular resort of Hurghada, was named after 68-year-old Elisabeth Sauer.

She was seen walking in the shallows close to shore after she told her Austrian partner of Egyptian descent: “I’ll be back for a moment.”

A video was widely shared online – it was mentioned about the attack, but any independent Couldn’t verify – apparently showing Mrs. Sawyer trying to swim to shore as passersby threw a flotation device towards her from the pier.

It is believed to have been attacked by a mako or oceanic white shark in the famous bay of Sahl Hasheesh on the Red Sea coast on Friday.

The local Green Party in Kramsach wrote on Facebook: “We are sorry for the death of Elizabeth Sawyer (68), who died in a tragic accident! Our deepest condolences to the family!”

“Elizabeth has been committed to the environment from the very first hour at Kramsach, Consultant from 1998 – 2004, for many years a loyal Alternative Board Member and GR Candidate! May God have mercy on her!

We would like to take this opportunity to express our sincere condolences and sympathy. We will remember her forever for her warm way and human connection.”

The victim was taken to a private hospital immediately after the attack, but she died of circulatory failure – a sudden drop in blood pressure as a result of her injuries and blood loss – according to a source in the Red Sea Health Affairs Directorate.

Empty sunbeds during low tide on the Red Sea beach at Sahl Hasheesh Resort in Hurghada

(Amr Abdullah Dalsh/Reuters/file photo)

Some reports say the Austrian woman was a tourist who was visiting Egypt with her partner and was due to return home on Sunday, while others claim that she has been living in Egypt for five years with her Egyptian husband.

On Sunday, a second woman was found to have died in a separate shark attack just 650 feet from Ms. Sawyer.

The name of the victim in the second attack was not revealed, but it is believed to be a Romanian tourist.

The Romanian foreign ministry said it was working to identify the victim, notify the family and see the body as it was repatriated.

Egypt’s Red Sea Governorate issued an order to close several Red Sea beaches on Saturday, banning water activities including diving, snorkeling, windsurfing and kite surfing. Fishing boats have also been banned from the waters off Hurghada.

Shark attacks have been relatively rare in Egypt’s Red Sea coastal region in recent years.

A tourist dives near the beach of Sahl Hasheesh Resort on the Red Sea, Hurghada, in January 2020

(Amr Abdullah Dalsh/Reuters/file photo)

In 2020, a young Ukrainian boy lost his arm, and an Egyptian tour guide lost his leg in a shark attack.

In 2010, a series of shark attacks killed a European tourist and maimed several others off Sharm el-Sheikh in the Sinai Peninsula, across the Red Sea from Hurghada.

Egypt’s Red Sea resorts, including Hurghada and Sharm El Sheikh, are some of the country’s major beach destinations and are popular with European tourists.

Divers are attracted to the steep offshore coral reefs that offer a rich and colorful marine life.

Additional reporting by agencies

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