Alligator bite victim meets dispatchers who helped save him

Hunter James Boyce shares his story of survival. His wife, Terisa, sits next to him at St. Mary's Medical Center. (WPEC)

A man attacked by an alligator in November 2019 is finally meeting the dispatchers who helped rescue him.

“If it wasn’t for all of y’all, we would’ve never got out of there and the helicopters never would have found us,” James Boyce said.

Boyce was hunting with his wife, Terisa, in the J.W. Corbett Wildlife Refuge when he was bitten by an alligator on the leg. The Martin County Sheriff's Office, Martin County Fire-Rescue and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission helped find and airlift Boyce out of the park.

“We’re never gonna give up on...we're never going to say, well we just can’t find them you know and call it a day. They’ll send out another helicopter if they have to,” dispatcher Chris Doyle said.

Boyce was brought to St. Mary's Medical Center with extensive damage to his knee and leg. He is back to work, but still suffers from pain and fatigue following the bite.

The couple has wanted to meet the people who helped save them since the attack happened three months ago.

“When we were in the hospital, I said I just want to thank these people for what they’ve done,” Boyce said.

It was a rewarding moment for the dispatchers as well.

“It’s the hardest part of this job that we don’t get the closure," Doyle said.