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German tourist dies a week after being bitten by shark off Maui

By Star-Advertiser staff

LAST UPDATED: 02:15 p.m. HST, Aug 21, 2013

The 20-year-old woman who lost her right arm in a shark attack while snorkeling off Maui last week died today, her family announced.

Jana Lutteropp, a visitor from Germany, had been on life support at Maui Memorial Medical Center after she was bitten 50 yards offshore in an area known as White Rock in Makena last Wednesday.

In a statement released by the hospital, Lutteropp’s mother, Jutta Lutteropp, and sister, Julia Broeske, said, “Jana fought hard to stay alive. However, we are sad to say that she lost her fight today. Jana was a very beautiful, strong, young woman who was always laughing, and we will forever remember her that way.

"We appreciate all the support from the Maui community, as well as the prayers and thoughts from around the world and in Germany.

"We especially want to thank the wonderful caregivers and everyone at Maui Memorial Medical Center.”

The family requested that donations be made to the Maui Memorial Medical Center Foundation in her memory. 

According to the British newspaper Daily Mail, Lutteropp is originally from Zierenberg north of Kassel in western Germany. She was a member of the town's carnival troupe called Grace Berger Dance Guard and had left Germany last summer to work as an au pair in Seattle, Washington.

She was in Hawaii for a three-week vacation and was planning to return to Germany Sept. 11, according to her personal blog as well as a website that serves the region where her town is located.

On her blog, Lutteropp wrote about her experiences working as an au pair for an American family living in Issaquah – a suburb of Seattle. She had spent a year caring for her host family’s three boys – 4-year-old twins and their 5-year-old brother. Her last day on the job was Aug. 12.   

Lutteropp was snorkeling 50 yards off Palauea Beach in Makena when the shark attack occurred at about 4:45 p.m. last Wednesday.

There have been eight shark attacks in Hawaii this year, including three on Maui, according to a state database. There were 11 shark attacks in the state in 2012. The last fatal shark attack occurred April 7, 2004, at the Kahana shore in West Maui, when a surfer was helped out of the water but died on shore despite rescue efforts by beachgoers, police and paramedics.

In Lutteropp’s case, a high school teacher visiting from California jumped into the water after hearing her screaming and seeing blood in the surf. In news reports, Rick Moore, 57, of Laguna Niguel, Calif. said Lutteropp went in and out of consciousness and kept repeating that she was going to die.

After the attack, Moore's friend Nicholas Grisaffi stood in neck-high water and took Lutteropp from Moore, carrying her limp body out of the water. Grisaffi told the Associated Press today that they've been praying for her.

"I was really hoping it would be a miracle and she would pull through," said the 61-year-old Moore of Laguna Beach, Calif.

Grisaffi said he's been replaying the ordeal in his mind. "Rick risked his life," Grisaffi said. "Did I do enough? Should I have grabbed my fins and swam out with him?"

State officials announced yesterday that a state-funded study to look at tiger shark movements around Maui is scheduled to begin next month. The $186,000 two-year study will examine the behavior of tiger sharks on Maui compared with the other main Hawaiian Islands.

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Shark attack victim dies

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2disgusted2 wrote:
This comment has been deleted.
on August 21,2013 | 01:04PM
KekoaBradshaw wrote:
"Hawaii suits some people and others it literally devours" Is that supposed to be witty? It's not.
on August 21,2013 | 02:20PM
1local wrote:
hawaii lawmakers who banned shark finning are responsible and should be held liable...
on August 21,2013 | 07:39PM
mellowyellow11 wrote:
Dont get bit by any thing in maui. bethany lost hert arm in kauai and she survived. they should have flown her to honolulu. All the maui county government cares about is green backs and how much each visitor is spending on hotel rooms, dining etc. but to warn unsuspecting tourist that they could fall off a 300 foot high cliffs if they relieve themselves in the bushes going to hana, or that they could get sucked out to sea in the 7 sacred pools or that there is a more dangerous blow hole there than in honolulu that they arent adequately warning tourists about. all these things cou'd be cared less about as long as the spending data is favorable. wow.
on August 21,2013 | 02:24PM
ellinaskyrt wrote:

Holy cow, what a horrible, poisonous thing thing to say. You don't know if Bethany's injuries were less traumatic than Jana's. Bethany may have been just stable enough for transport to Honolulu whereas Jana was not. Or maybe Jana had a medical issue that was a contributing factor in why she didn't survive. If you don't have knowledge of each person's medical history and the course of treatment, you have absolutely no footing to question the decisions made by the healthcare and first responding professionals who were actually in the position to know whether it was appropriate to transport or not.

on August 21,2013 | 03:30PM
Kalaheo1 wrote:
I agree that is horrible and inappropriate. And Bethany was treated at Wilcox on Kauai.
on August 21,2013 | 03:52PM
aomohoa wrote:
That's right!
on August 21,2013 | 04:31PM
FluidMotion wrote:
This is for people like mellow. The outside can be dangerous. Enter at your own risk. If you do not understand this simple fact, please strap on your helmet and stay indoors.
on August 21,2013 | 04:04PM
aomohoa wrote:
Do you have to be such a nasty jack a@#!
on August 21,2013 | 04:31PM
joewilly wrote:
Another stupid comment from another stupid person.
on August 21,2013 | 04:43PM
joewilly wrote:
Disgusted-YOU are digusting!! What kind of "devouring" comment is that? The shark should have bitten you!!
on August 21,2013 | 04:41PM
RetiredWorking wrote:
IRT 2disgusted2, you should do research on when to use the word "literally" and "figuratively". Contrary to your personal experience, it is literally impossible for the state of Hawaii to devour other people. I guess you meant well with your first two sentences, but your endgame failed.
on August 21,2013 | 05:36PM
lynnh wrote:
Stupid comment! How heartless of a thing to say.
on August 22,2013 | 12:04AM
ryan02 wrote:
A sad outcome. I'm still impressed that a by-stander had the courage to swim over and help her when there was a shark in the area and blood in the water. It's sad she didn't make it.
on August 21,2013 | 01:05PM
allie wrote:
True. Heroic effort. I am so sorry for her family. Please be careful in our infested waters.
on August 21,2013 | 01:39PM
tiki886 wrote:
This comment has been deleted.
on August 21,2013 | 02:20PM
BH1 wrote:
I am amazed that people continue to say that large sharks do not "devour" their human victims. In the 90's on Maui a lady was swimming approx 75 yards from shore and she was attacked by a large tiger. Her swimming partner along with several other witness attempted to go to her rescue but the shark continued to attack her. Then another large tiger came and they both proceeded to "devour" parts of her body. If you google all the deadly shark attacks in hawaii, you will realize that many victims were "eaten". Tigers, which are the most common culprits in Hawaii eat anything. So, in response to tiki, it seems you are undermiming the courage this woman's rescuers had. They are truly heroes and were not just "knowingly" rescuing someone cause it was safe to do so.
on August 21,2013 | 05:05PM
RetiredWorking wrote:
IRT BH1, that's the one I was referring to.
on August 21,2013 | 05:46PM
RetiredWorking wrote:
"You should not hesitate to jump in and help the victim". Are you out of your mind? Have you ever heard of a feeding frenzy? That's how one female swimmer lost her life. She swam at the same beach almost every day. The day she died, she was menstruating. Do you think that had anything to do with the sharks attacking her? No, I am NOT going to mention which beach and cause hysteria.
on August 21,2013 | 05:43PM
csdhawaii wrote:
This is so horrible...I'm so sorry for the family. May you find peace in this difficult time.
on August 21,2013 | 01:06PM
allie wrote:
on August 21,2013 | 01:39PM
fairgame947 wrote:
Why wasn't she flown to Queen's. It's a trauma center and I believe better equipped to handle a situation such as her's which I would think would be classified as a trauma case. Been there with family. Thank God for trauma centers.
on August 21,2013 | 01:09PM
ryan02 wrote:
This is a guess, but the doctors would have to decide whether the additional time to fly her over to Queen's was worth the additional help she could have gotten there. If they were able to stop the blood loss at Maui Memorial and otherwise provide her with appropriate treatment, there would be no need to send her. It's possible she had a heart attack or something from blood loss, that she would not have recovered from no matter which hospital she was sent to.
on August 21,2013 | 01:47PM
maya wrote:
If you loose too much blood, you can develop a condition called DIC- and you loose the ability to clot your blood. You basically bleed out. Very, very sad.
on August 21,2013 | 02:34PM
Skyler wrote:
DIC is nearly always fatal.
on August 21,2013 | 05:51PM
HAJAA1 wrote:
They are overrated.
on August 21,2013 | 01:48PM
HAJAA1 wrote:
Like most things in town lol
on August 21,2013 | 01:50PM
aomohoa wrote:
Any lol comment right now is inappropriate.
on August 21,2013 | 04:33PM
maya wrote:
Queens is the best hospital that I have ever worked in.
on August 21,2013 | 02:35PM
jess wrote:
They're the only Level 1 trauma center in the state. I hope that you're never in a situation where you have to go to an "overrated" hospital. No hospital is overrated, they all save lives. It might be yours one day so watch what you say so you don't get bachi.
on August 21,2013 | 03:53PM
ellinaskyrt wrote:
thank you, jess!
on August 22,2013 | 08:22AM
RetiredWorking wrote:
Too bad you weren't there to make that life-and-death choice. You must have known something about this tragic occurrence and how the Maui trauma center operates and decides who get airlifted to Queen's. Armchair generals, they're all over this forum.
on August 21,2013 | 02:54PM
jess wrote:
I totally agree. I don't doubt that Maui Memorial gave it their best but they should have stabilized her there and brought her to Queens for extended treatment.
on August 21,2013 | 03:52PM
ellinaskyrt wrote:
okay, but this comment, i disagree with. sometimes, despite the best efforts of all involved, a patient cannot be stabliized enough that transport can be made safe. if any of the people who were involved in jana's care are reading this, please disregard the people who are inappropriately second-guessing your expertise and care. they're speaking totally out of ignorance (though not necessarily completely in maliciousness).
on August 22,2013 | 08:24AM
otoko wrote:
My deepest sympathy to the Lutteropp's and extended family on a tragic loss for them.
on August 21,2013 | 01:13PM
mynah wrote:
Very sad indeed.
on August 21,2013 | 01:23PM
volcanohereicome wrote:
Very sad to hear. Prayers to the family.
on August 21,2013 | 01:37PM
HAJAA1 wrote:
It is wonderful for the family (and says a lot about MMH) to have donations go to the hospital. Good job I'm sure they did the best they could.
on August 21,2013 | 01:48PM
Mypualani wrote:
Thoughts and prayers. Actually sitting her mourning this young lady whom I have never met.
on August 21,2013 | 01:48PM
Publicbraddah wrote:
Like everyone else, I was hoping for the best. Deepest condolences to the Lutteropp family.
on August 21,2013 | 01:55PM
newsjunky1 wrote:
Condolences on the loss of your daughter.
on August 21,2013 | 02:01PM
RetiredWorking wrote:
My prayers are with her and her family. What a tragic accident.
on August 21,2013 | 02:55PM
kiragirl wrote:
May God bless.
on August 21,2013 | 02:02PM
mellowyellow11 wrote:
Dont get bit by any thing in maui. bethany lost her right armin kauai and she survived. they should have flown her to honolulu. plus all the maui county cares about is green backs and how much each vistor is spending on hotel rooms, dining etc. they even have statistics for that but to warn unsuspecting tourist that they could fall off a 300 foot high cliffs if they relieve themselves in the bushes going to hana, or that they could get sucked out to sea in the 7 sacred pools or that they have a more dangerous blow hole than honolulu that they arent adequately warning tourists about. all these things coud be cared less about as long as the spending data is favorable. wow.
on August 21,2013 | 02:22PM
false wrote:
Dirtbagger. Good job with the cut and paste. You're a waste of good air.
on August 21,2013 | 05:46PM
Skyler wrote:
Stop repeating yourself already.
on August 21,2013 | 05:53PM
KalikoBoy wrote:
What a tragedy! May God bless and comfort her family and friends in Germany. May she now rest in peace with no more pain and suffering.
on August 21,2013 | 02:24PM
kainalu wrote:
I'm bummed. Our condolences to the family and friends of this girl.
on August 21,2013 | 02:26PM
patk wrote:
How horribly sad. My condolences to the family.
on August 21,2013 | 02:29PM
Mei mei wrote:
my condolences the family and loved ones ~ it is sad :(( i thought she was going to pull through... another Angel in Heaven ~
on August 21,2013 | 02:34PM
alba66 wrote:
Poignant. Tragic. Another such event I remember vividly occurred when a visiting UH Manoa student from Cornwall, UK was hit by a careless driver on Beretania when she was crossing the street. I had exchanged some banter with her the day before when I noticed her Brit accent in the campus surf equipment office where she was an attendant. To read the horrific news in the Ka Leo or the Advertiser the next day that she was run over and that the young driver was not tested for drinking in the ensuing chaos when it was said that he was under the influence by onlookers added to the meaninglessness of the event.
on August 21,2013 | 02:41PM
iwanaknow wrote:
Now the real sharks (lawyers) will come out and look for someone to sue?
on August 21,2013 | 03:57PM
CriticalReader wrote:
I wonder if she had a J-1 Visa.
on August 21,2013 | 04:02PM
ellinaskyrt wrote:
Really? She was tourist, not here as a student!
on August 22,2013 | 08:25AM
NuuanuMama wrote:
My tears are falling for the Lutteropp family.
on August 21,2013 | 04:09PM
residenttaxpayer wrote:
How terribly sad.....condolences to the family and friends.......
on August 21,2013 | 04:48PM
babyb_19 wrote:
We used to eat shark fins but since the ban...the sharks are eating "US"...My condolences to the family....
on August 21,2013 | 05:05PM
RetiredWorking wrote:
My heart grieves for this young woman. But my heart also grieves for the millions upon millions of sharks harvested for their fins and released to die.
on August 21,2013 | 05:49PM
localgirl2 wrote:
Sadly it must have been her time. I believe we all have a date that we will no longer be breathing. Some of us die young and sadly this woman will be a statistic. To her family and friends, she will be sorely missed.
on August 21,2013 | 05:34PM
primowarrior wrote:
My prayers and sympathies to the Lutteropp family. I was hoping that she would recover, and am very sad that she didn't.
on August 21,2013 | 05:42PM
royboy88 wrote:
Very sad. Never met the young lady, but am heartbroken that she met this tragedy. My thoughts and prayers are with her family.
on August 21,2013 | 06:34PM
Brixac3 wrote:
The state has to go back to thinning out the population of tiger sharks over 10' long. We need to draw a line regarding this culturally sensitive issue and safety. To protect sharks for religious reasons is not a position the state should be taking. I saw an interview with a Kumu, who said that Hawaiians hunted sharks and if people truly respected and honored the Mano god (i.e. Kamohoalii or Ukupanipo), they would feed and care for them. Btw, there is also a lizard goddess (Kalamainuu) and a fish deity (Kuula), but I don't hear anyone saying we should not kill lizards or fish.
on August 21,2013 | 07:59PM
tiki886 wrote:
This comment has been deleted.
on August 21,2013 | 08:30PM
RetiredWorking wrote:
IRT tiki. Think about it.....traces of blood in the water. Sharks can follow a miniscule presence of blood for up to a mile or more. S T F UP and do your research. would you agree that swimmers are advised not to enter the water if they have open cuts?
on August 22,2013 | 06:02AM
naialani wrote:
My Aloha to the family of Jana. My thoughts are with you all...
on August 21,2013 | 09:42PM
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