The Florida bar-goer who had his armed chomped off by a 10-and-a-half-foot alligator has revealed he was mauled while peeing in a pond.
Speaking from his bed in a Fort Myers intensive care unit, Jordan Rivera, 23, told NBC2 that he only left busy Banditos Bar for a quick bathroom break in the early hours Sunday because the restroom line was too long.
“I just saw a little lake, so I was tryna go over there and take a little pee,” he told the outlet, saying he “didn’t realize how big” the pond actually was.
“Something happened where I either tripped or the ground below me kind of just went down — and I ended up in the water,” he said.
“And that’s literally the last thing I remember.”
He recalled his utter “confusion” when he awoke in a hospital bed — and was told a gator had eaten his right arm.
“I looked over and I saw my arm the way it was — and I was like, ‘Whoa,’” he said.
“It was the craziest thing — it was almost like out of a movie.”
Even so, he remains philosophical about his gruesome run-in, saying: “I didn’t lose my life — I lost an arm. It’s not the end of the world.”
Rivera revealed the real reason for his near-death attack in part to dispel local gossip — that he became the gator’s meal while trying to feed it Banditos bar food.
“They don’t even serve food at that bar, so I couldn’t have even served the gator food,” he said, firmly calling the rumor “completely not true.”
He also marveled at Banditos regular Manny Hidalgo — who takes his pet cat, Mr. Tom, bar-hopping with him — for rushing over to pull him to safety.
“The first thing I would do is shake the man’s hand,” said Rivera, perhaps again forgetting that he’d lost the arm he said he “kind of feels like” it’s still “just there.”
The mauled man’s mom, Teresa Lessa, also hailed those who raced to help, including Army veteran Trent Rozier, who told The Daily Sun that he used a belt as a tourniquet, kneeling on Rivera’s shoulder to stop the bleeding while they waited for him to be airlifted to the hospital.
“I call them angels,” the relieved mom said, sure they “saved his life.”