FLOWER MOUND, Texas — Lindsay Bruns is back home in North Texas after surviving a nasty shark bite in the Florida Keys. Just hours before the attack, she and her daughters enjoyed time in the clear waters of the gulf.
"We'd been on the sandbar most of the day, just swimming and playing with our kids," Lindsay's husband Luke said.
Luke sent WFAA family pictures taken just hours before the attack.
Lindsay and their five- and seven-year-old daughters posed for smiling photos in the water and on the boat.
A picture of the family snorkeling sticks out to Luke because, at the time, his daughters were disappointed they didn't see any sharks.
Not long after that, Luke said, Lindsay did a flip off the boat.
"She emerged from the water and said 'help,'" Luke told WFAA.
Luke said he saw so much blood. Without skipping a beat, he dove in to save his wife.
"Her thigh was off and hanging by about two inches of flesh," Luke said. "Her femur was fully exposed. It was just squirting blood."
Miraculously, Lindsay stayed calm. She asked her husband for a bottle of water and a towel to cover her wound, so her daughters didn't have to see.
They were sobbing.
"I told them, 'girls, you need to pray for your mama,'" Luke said.
"I couldn't hear on with the boat. And but I could see their lips moving. I could see their hands together."
It took Luke 30 minutes to get his wife to shore and under the care of EMS. Before he took off, he used a rope from the boat's anchor as a tourniquet. Doctors later told Luke he tied it perfectly, not too loose, not too tight. And it saved his wife's life.
"Some of the surgeons asked me at the hospital, 'how did you know how to tie the tourniquet?" Luke said.
"I was like, 'you know, I didn't. I'd seen it on TV before.'"
After she was airlifted to a hospital in Miami, Lindsay underwent 11 blood transfusions, three long surgeries, eight days in the hospital and two more in a Miami hotel.
But she smiled through the treatment, knowing she survived. Getting to keep her leg was the icing on the cake.
"It's moving in the right direction," Luke said. "She's exceeding everyone's expectations.
Luke, Lindsay, and their girls are back in North Texas now. They came home to a stocked fridge, thanks to some generous Flower Mound neighbors.
"We had three different sets of neighbors bringing us food, and they started a meal train through the church, and some of the other friends and family are all involved in that," Luke told WFAA.
As traumatizing as the incident was for their little girls, Luke said he think they learned a lot about resilience from their mother. Lindsay is already itching to go back to the Florida Keys once she's fully healed.
"Our kids have been down there every year of their life. You know, we love the water. We love the ocean," Luke said. "I think we'll all be stronger from it."