Saturday, December 12, 2009

Shark Bite

As a kid growing up on the outskirts of Chicago, Jonathan Kathrein spent hours and hours at Tower Lakes Beach playing the swimming chase game "sharks and minnows" with his family and friends.

"It's more fun being a minnow, because minnows can swim really fast to get away from the shark," he told his mom Marge one day as he dried off.

A decade later, after the family moved to Lucas Valley, the 16-year-old Kathrein was surfing at Stinson Beach and was unable to outswim a great white shark. It ravaged his right leg and spurred worldwide media attention that would forever change his life. In a new memoir more than a decade in the making, Marge Kathrein chronicles the deep impact the incident had on her, her son and her family and hopes others will learn the values they did in crisis.

"Far From Shore: A Mother's Memoir of a Shark Attack," self-published through a division of, documents in vivid detail the immediate and long-term aftermath of the Aug. 26, 1998 shark attack that left Jonathan Kathrein with wounds that took 200 stitches to close. It also addresses the emotional scarring Marge Kathrein sustained, her family's evolution after the event and Jonathan Kathrein's battles to overcome his fear of the ocean, capped by his participation in the Tiburon Mile ocean race in September. Read on.

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