Outdoorsman Rudy Noorlander who had his jaw ripped off by a bear three months ago is now SPEAKING about his ordeal and surviving the attack
- Rudy Noorlander, 61, has spoken out about being attacked by a bear in September in the Utah woods
- He is now back home in Montana and has shown great signs of improvement
- Noorlander’s next surgery is scheduled for March and he hopes he will be able to eat solid foods after that procedure
The Montana grandpa who had his jaw snagged off by a grizzly bear has gone on to speak out about the ordeal and his recovery.
Rudy Noorlander, 61, was attacked by a bear around 10 feet tall on September 8 in Utah.
Since then, he has made it back home to Montana, where he’s learned to find light in the frightening moment.
‘And don’t fight any bears unless you got me with you,’ he told Fox News.
Noorlander recently got extensive jaw and dental reconstruction surgery after being released from the University of Utah Hospital, where he spent five weeks after the attack.
Rudy Noorlander was attacked by a grizzly bear in September in Utah and is now back home in Montana recovering. He recently sat down in an Outlaw Partners podcast episode
In order to reconstruct his jaw, doctors had to take a portion of his fibula bone in his leg, along with skin and an artery to help re-attach his jaw to his neck. The doctors had to transplant soft skin tissue to his head and neck to reconstruct his lower lip. Noorlander’s head is now surrounded by metal wire and gauze as he heals
Since then, he has gone on to find a sense of normalcy while still attending frequent doctor’s visits and surgeries to try to get back to who he was before the encounter.
When he was initially released at the beginning of October, Noorlander said he was eager to make the seven-hour trek home to Montana to see his dog and get back to work.
During this time, speech was exceptionally difficult for Noorlander as he had to turn to a whiteboard to communicate with those around him.
His speech has since improved as he recently sat down in an Outlaw Partners podcast episode and spoke about his unique and scary experience.
When asked if he frequently thinks about the wild moment, Noorlander told the hosts that he doesn’t think of it that often, but when it first happened, he did.
‘The second or third week, it was almost PTSD, it would wake me up,’ Noorlander said.
One of the hosts then asked if he was thinking of going to therapy ‘to get through it’, to which Noorlander replied: ‘I’m already through it.’
Right before his attack, Noorlander was helping two hunters look for a dear, and while he searched, he came across a small grizzly bear guarding a deer carcass just before a large bear, around ten feet tall, charged from behind a tree.
Madison County dispatch received a 911 call at 1:47pm, according to a press release from Gallatin County Sheriff Search and Rescue. Noorlander waited for two hours after the attack until he could be safely rescued
Noorlander happily walked out of the University of Utah Hospital back in October after he spent five weeks there after the attack. He’s pictured with his daughters and grandchildren
Without any time to reach for his bear repellent, he attempted to shoot the beast but failed.
The grizzly then took him down, bit off his jaw, scratched him on his chest and left him with bites on his arms and legs.
‘The actual incident I don’t remember a whole lot,’ Noorlander said. ‘I remember pointing the gun at him, pulling the trigger – it misfired. He had me up in the air. He bit down and I yelled “help me!”‘
Madison County dispatch received a 911 call at 1:47pm, according to a press release from Gallatin County Sheriff Search and Rescue.
Since the bears were still in the area, the first helicopter that arrived had to wait for backup to assist in keeping the creatures away.
Noorlander waited for two hours after the attack until he could be safely rescued.
He was rushed into emergency surgery in Montana before he was flown to Bozeman Health Deaconess Regional Medical Center in Salt Lake City, where surgeons reconstructed his jaw.
In order to reconstruct his jaw, doctors had to take a portion of his fibula bone in his leg, along with skin and an artery to help re-attach his jaw to his neck. The doctors had to transplant soft skin tissue to his head and neck to reconstruct his lower lip. Noorlander’s head is now surrounded by metal wire and gauze as he heals.
Noorlander also suffered a severe scratch across his chest, left him with bites up and down his arms and legs, puncture marks to his head and a collapsed lung.
Despite such a traumatic journey, Noorlander has been nothing but positive about it all.
‘Ups and downs. Good days and bad days, but most of them are decent,’ his daughter Ashley said.
His grandchildren have caught on to his optimistic outlook as his grandson now considers him a superhero.
When he was still in the hospital, his granddaughter expressed how excited she was just to have him home again.
His other daughter, KateLynn, created a GoFundMe page to help with hospital expenses even though he has Veteran medical insurance.
‘The Grizzly left a large scratch down his right chest, bit his arms, legs, and to top it all off, gave him as what Rudy describes as the most disgusting french kiss of his life before biting down and tearing off his lower jaw,’ KateLynn said on the page. ]
Noorlander also suffered a severe scratch across his chest, left him with bites up and down his arms and legs, puncture marks to his head and a collapsed lung
Noorlander prior to the grizzly attack
Despite the attack, Noorlander is now eager to get back outside as he’s already gone on a snow mobile ride
Despite the attack, Noorlander is now eager to get back outside as he’s already gone on a snowmobile ride.
‘He is the most positive person I have ever met – he’s a little crazy, though,’ Ashley said.
He still struggles with eating, speaking clearly, swallowing and brushing his teeth, but in the past three months, he has improved greatly.
His next surgery is scheduled for March, and he hopes that after that he will be able to eat solid foods.
Noorlander also mentioned how grateful he is for all of the support he’s gotten during his long journey and has even gone on to make an Instagram account to stay connected to his fans.
‘I have my family,’ Noolander said. ‘[The attack] helped me grow closer to God, helped me resolve some issues. All in all… you can either go up or go down, and I choose to be up.
‘I know he’s got a plan for me – there’s a reason he kept me here. I personally believe that the rest of my life is planned out because of this – Alpine Adventures has me [during the week] and I plan on doing church devotionals, inspirational talks through the church.’
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