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Producers' Pick | Shark Week Host Paul De Gelder on Brian's fear of sharks

Brian Kilmeade Show / Brian Kilmeade
The Truth Network Radio
January 21, 2023 12:00 am

Producers' Pick | Shark Week Host Paul De Gelder on Brian's fear of sharks

Brian Kilmeade Show / Brian Kilmeade

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January 21, 2023 12:00 am

Paul De Gelder, Shark Week host and author of the new book "Shark: Why We Need to Save the World's Most Misunderstood Predator," joined Brian to talk about his passion for one of the world's most feared predators: the shark. Paul's passion bleeds through as he discusses his journey from surviving a shark attack to hosting Discovery Channel's Shark Week. PLUS: Who knew Brian was terrified of sharks?

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CBS Sunday Morning
Jane Pauley

Hey, welcome back everyone. We are following the breaking story that Alec Baldwin has been charged along with the armor, who you probably don't know her name, been charged with involuntary manslaughter, another charge that could result in prison time. Now he's got to lawyer up and find out where we go from here, all about that Rust shooting.

So Alec Baldwin has been charged involuntary manslaughter in the death of Helena Hutchins, an assistant director, um, pleads to negligence use of a deadly weapon. Meanwhile, on a totally separate note, Paul de Gelder is with us now. Paul is the host of Discovery Channel's Shark Week and author of the new book Shark, Why We Need to Save the World's Most Misunderstood Predator. Hey Paul, welcome. G'day Brian, how are you mate?

Good, where are you calling from? Um, actually a shock show in Vegas. Oh, you're in a shark show or a truck show? A big government weapons sort of expo in Vegas. A lot of military friends here, a lot of contractors. It's a free-for-all, it's pretty amazing.

Well everybody knows you from Shark Week and Discovery and what you do on television and what you've done in the past, but for now the title of your book is intriguing. Why do we need to save the sharks to save the oceans? Mate, a lot of people don't understand. It's kind of like playing a game of Jenga.

Everyone knows what that is. You remove a couple of the bottom blocks and everything starts to get unstable. Sharks are like those blocks. They're a keystone species is what's called an apex predator. And once you remove the apex predator from the environment, the ripple effect down through the eco chain doesn't just stop at the carnivorous fish populations that explode because there's nothing to eat them, or the fish that they eat which keep the reefs healthy, but it actually dominoes down onto us as humans in the outcome. So it's actually beneficial for us to look after the sharks and we're just being decimated, mate.

It's a great thing for me in my military life to transfer my role as a protector of humans to now being able to be a protector and speak up for an animal that doesn't have a voice. Well, you say they're unfairly labeled as predators. You think they got bad...Jaws ruined the shark.

I don't know about everyone else, but I love Jaws. I don't think there's anything wrong with that. I think the problem is human beings not being able to separate reality from fiction. That's more of a worry for me. So what is the reality of sharks? I mean, we have a reason to fear them. Men and women, you are attacked by sharks, right? Well, you know, terminology is important. When we say attack, the majority of the time it's not an attack. It's an investigatory bite, we call it, but they're not out to eat us.

And if you do the comparisons, say, you know, 100 people in America today are going to die on the roads. In comparison, 10 people a year are going to be killed by a shark, yet we kill over 100 million sharks a year. So who's the real monster here?

It's not the sharks. I've been attacked. I have like the word attack. Yes, it tried to eat me. I actually didn't try it.

I actually succeeded. Took my hamstring, took my hand when I was a Navy bomb disposal diver doing counterterrorism in Australia and a 10 foot bull shark took off my hand and my leg. So if I can understand the important role of sharks after what I've been through and then go and work with Shark Week and Discovery Channel and stand up for them, I feel like everyone else should be able to understand it the same way. And that's why I wrote this book because I wanted everyone to not just understand, but have a deep, deep respect for them.

Steve Irwin once said, if you can teach people love something, then they want to protect it. And so that's the role of the book shark. So Paul, can you tell us what happens when you lost two limbs in that shark attack? Try and get out of the water really, really quick, which is hard when you've got one hand and one leg and you're swimming through a pool with your own blood.

Okay, that's cause the end would lead up to the attack. So I was pretending to be an attack swimmer, and we were working with the R&D department in the military that was putting new sonar, automated video equipment, and really just swimming on the surface from point A to point B, pretending to put a bomb on a warship. And I'm on the surface on my back, you know, a black wetsuit, a pair of fins, flapping around so, you know, sharks look at like an injured seal, I guess, but there had never been a shark attack in Sydney Harbour in 50 years.

And so even though we knew they were there, they never bothered us. So I'm just kicking along seven o'clock in the morning in February 2009, and a 10-foot bull shark came up from underneath me, grabbed me by the back of my right leg and my right hand in the same bite, and decided that it wanted them more than I did. Pretty, pretty horrible feeling.

People ask me if it hurt, and I say, well, go into your lounge room, kick your coffee table, your shin as hard as you can, and then times out by a million. And so I thought I was going to die. I accepted the fact that I was going to die because there was absolutely no way I could get out of it.

It was tearing me apart. And then it removed my hamstring, ripped out my hand, and my wetsuit made me buoyant. So I popped to the surface realizing I'm not dead. I got to get the hell out of here before another shark comes thinking they're going to smell all the blood. So I swam back to my safety boat when my teammates were waiting with one hand and one leg through a pool of my own blood, and they kept me alive until the paramedics got there.

I got my priorities in order, and I asked my mate Tomo to look after my motorbike because I don't think I'm riding home from work today. And then he got me into emergency surgery. And thankfully, you know, we didn't have the best doctors, nurses, paramedics in the world, but all those people that donated blood, they saved my life as well. 300 donations of blood I went through. So thank you to everyone out there that donates blood. You are actually saving lives. But yet what you learn from that is to love sharks rather than hate them.

I don't know how you do that. It wasn't instantaneous. I actually didn't like sharks at all. I thought if we killed them, then we just could swim in the ocean and not have to worry about anything, and that'd be great. But because my recovery and my attack was so highly publicized in the media in Australia, every time there was a shark interaction after that, that would come to me for a comment asking why did the shark attack? How do we stay safe? And I didn't know. And so, you know, we have this wonderful thing called Google, and I started to learn. I did a deep dive, and there's this saying that we have knowledge dispels fear. And so it turns out the more I learn about sharks, the more I realized how little we have to fear of them and how much they have to fear from us. And so that kind of catapulted me into a whole new career. You know, I stayed in the Navy for three years as an instructor.

Turns out I hate teaching people to do things, and I just like doing them myself. So I ended up getting out of the Navy and fell into my two greatest fears, public speaking and sharks. Now I'm literally a public speaking shark diver. I travel America.

I give motivational, inspirational presentations at conferences, and I work with sharks, and I'm Shark Week. So the more time you spend with them, the more you fall in love with them. You realize that they're not out to get you. They are beautiful, incredible predators that will actually let you share their space. And you can't say that about too many other predators in the wild.

Like, you got to go up and hand feed a bear because it'll probably bite your head off. From the Fox News Podcast Network, I'm Ben Domenech, Fox News contributor and editor of the transom.com daily newsletter. And I'm inviting you to join a conversation every week. It's the Ben Domenech podcast. Subscribe and listen now by going to Fox News podcast dot com. So, Paul, you go in your show, you have a lot of celebrities on there.

You had Tyson, Ronda Rousey. So what is it like? Probably scarier than the sharks, because when we're on the boat about to dive down with 30 bull sharks and I'm about to teach her how to hand to feed one. He looks at me and goes, my wife don't get back on this boat.

Ain't none of y'all getting back on this boat. And she did. Oh, absolutely. Yeah.

Same as Tyson, same as Will Smith. They all get out of the water and say that is the best experience I've ever had in my life. And I wish I could share that with everyone, but I can't.

And so this book is my attempt to do that. Shark, why we need to save the world's most misunderstood predator. Paul, on sale this week. But you're not talking about that in Vegas today, are you? No, today I'm catching up with all the military buddies and just sharing the love, spreading the story, sharing the inspiration and motivation and having a good time. So, you know, I'm on the air on Fox, right, for a while. And for some reason, John Oliver on HBO heard a trend in some things that I said consistently when sharks came up in the news. So we had no reason to play it, Paul, until you came out with this book.

So let's play it. And now Fox and Friends' Brian Kilmeade is definitely afraid of sharks. It's shark week and we have real sharks.

Need proof? That's what they look like. A great white shark could be coming to your beach. Where that shark's heading and does he have your name on his mind? Servers are getting eaten by sharks.

Blue whales attacking kayakers. Wait, who's getting eaten by sharks? They almost got eaten by sharks. At SeaWorld, how many sharks do you have?

How do you see them? Why are you not intimidated by sharks? Why are all the big creatures coming so close to shore? Don't you feel like there's way too many sharks? Why are the sharks so angry? I was down in Palm Beach last week.

I saw them. Were you attacked? I was always told that sharks don't like the taste of humans. If you're ever attacked by a shark, punch him in the nose.

You're supposed to punch him in the nose. We should stay out of the water as human beings until the ocean starts calming down. One word, pool.

Go in a pool and stay away from the beach. A spinner shark jumped out about 20 feet from me, just kind of at me. Is there something that's a spinner shark? Yeah, jumps out of the water and kind of does a spin. So that's a little of the time sharks have come up on the show.

Am I hurting your cause? Ryan, I'm marinating on a Shark Week title that includes Kill Mead and Shark. Kill and Kill Mead and Shark. I think we need to get you out on the boat, my friend. Well, I'll tell you what. You just let me know. I'll see if I can work out my schedule. The problem is I don't really have any days off, ever, with you.

Well, you know, I am a military guy. I can just kidnap you and drag you out there. And we'll take you out and put you in the water with sharks and get you over this fear. I'm pretty sure I'll press Georges, but I'll get a signed book at the very least. Paul, thanks so much. Go out and get Paul's book, Shark, Why We Need to Save the World's Most Misunderstood Predator. Paul, have a great time in Vegas. You too, mate. Take care.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-01-21 11:23:58 / 2023-01-21 11:29:08 / 5

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