Woman Bitten by Shark Had Won Leukemia Battle

<i> Associated Press</i>

A woman authorities believe was killed by a great white shark had recently won a battle against leukemia, friends say.

The body found floating off a popular surfing spot Friday was identified as Michelle Von Emster, 25, of San Diego, the medical examiner’s office said Monday.

“What happened is really a shame because she had a lot of tough going in her life,” said Denise Knox, owner of the office supply store where Von Emster worked as a clerk. “What she told us was that she had been in remission the past two years from leukemia and that she had undergone really horrendous treatment.”


The body was found Friday, 200 yards off a beach at Point Loma. Marine biologists said the woman had been attacked by a 12-foot great white shark.

Barring new evidence, Von Emster’s death would be the first confirmed shark bite fatality along the Pacific Coast of the United States since 1989.