A Lucky Wyoming Man Grateful To Survive A Grizzly Attack
Lee Francis is a 65 year old Dentist from Evanston, WY. Francis and his son, who is also a Dentist, were on a mule deer hunt in northern Wyoming in the fall of 2022 when he was attacked and survived a grizzly bear.
The two Dentists are not strangers to grizzly bears, just the month prior they had two separate encounters with grizzlies. The first they were able to scare the bear off before it attacked and the second visited their camp, but only spooked their horses.
After these two encounters, Lee decided that he would start carrying his Glock with him.
That decision saved his life.
When he was attacked in October of 2022, he came upon the grizzly bears den, when the bear popped out. As soon as the bear came towards him, he started to shoot as the bear took him to the ground. In the process of going down, his natural reaction was to kick at the bear and in doing so, he shot himself in the lower leg.
Thanks to his quick reaction with the pistol, the bear ran off. His son began to administer first aid and the two rode their horses to meet Search and Rescue teams and be air lifted out.
Once University of Utah hospital, he had multiple surgeries on his leg and was pretty bruised up from the bear taking him to the ground.
Reporters interviewed him from this hospital bed where he said...
so I've been around these big bears, but it's a whole different deal when they're coming after ya and they've decided they're going to take you out.
Lee said he thought the bear was just protecting his den and that the bear had a different kind of demeanor and the bear was coming after him. He said
I'll probably have a nightmare or two, the next time I'm up in the mountains
There's not doubt that the Dentist got lucky and knew how to defend himself during the attack.
Of course anytime you're in grizzly country you should be prepared. Carrying bear spray, know what kind of bear you're dealing with and the steps you need to take to deal with the encounter,
Before heading into bear country, check out Bear-Wise Wyoming, from Wyoming Game and Fish Department. You'll find everything you need to know what to do in the event you have an encounter with a grizz.
Check out the this video from Wild Animal Network on YouTube about the attack.