‘I might die’

This marathon runner encountered a bear mid-race and hoped that playing dead might keep her alive

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Karen Williams was in the middle of a running a marathon in New Mexico, finishing a mile-long stretch in a meadow and cresting a small hill when she realized what was in front of her: a black bear. In fact, it was a black mama bear that was charging at Williams as she approached, Williams wrote on Facebook after the incident. She yelled out “no” and put her arms up before realizing that there was a bear cub stuck in a nearby tree. The adult black bear knocked Williams to the ground, raked her over with her claws and bit her, she said.

“I cried out in pain and Mama bear did not like that so she hit me with a left hook and bit my neck and started to try to shake me,” Williams wrote, recalling the attack. “I rolled into a ball and played dead.”

The tactic worked, and the adult bear left Williams and went over to the tree the cub was in, watching while the cub tried to climb down the tree.

“Mama bear kept glancing my way to make sure that I was still ‘dead’. I was at that point afraid I might die,” she said.

Williams suffered serious injuries and was airlifted to a nearby hospital, the New Mexico Department of Game and Fish said. In an interview with ABC News, Williams said the bear took “a nice chunk out of my eyebrow” that will likely require plastic surgery to fix. The bear was tracked down and euthanized.

Watch more from ABC News:

Read the full story at The Washington Post.

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