Northern California Optometrist Killed By Shark in Hawaii

Thomas Smiley, 65, was swimming about 60 yards from shore when the attack happened

A Northern California man who died after being attacked by a shark while swimming in Hawaii was pulled ashore missing a leg, according to a witness.

Shark warning signs were posted Sunday in the Ka'anapali Beach Park area on Maui where the man, identified as 65-year-old Thomas Smiley, died a day earlier.

Relatives told NBC's Sacramento affiliate KCRA that Smiley was an optometrist from the Sacramento suburb of Granite Bay. Dr. Gary Taxera, a life-long friend of Smiley's, told NBC he was in shock when he heard the news. 

"I almost fell where I was standing. I actually had to sit down," Taxera said, adding that Smiley will be "sorely missed."

Smiley was swimming about 60 yards from shore when the attack happened, according to authorities.

Witness Allison Keller told Hawaii News Now that the man appeared unconscious as rescuers pulled him from the water and performed CPR Saturday morning.

"As we got closer, I saw some blood on his stomach and then I got looking a little bit more and his wrist, it looked like the skin on his wrist was just torn off," Keller said. "And then I got looking closer and his entire left leg from his knee down was just missing."

The last fatal shark attack in Hawaii was in 2015, when a snorkeler off Maui was killed.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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