California woman survives bear attack inside Lake Tahoe cabin

A San Francisco Bay Area woman said she's lucky to be alive after a bear attacked her inside her family's cabin near California's famed Lake Tahoe. Laurel-Rose Von Hoffmann-Curzi suffered injuries to her face, chest and arms when a bear mauled her last weekend and she had to receive dozens of stitches, CBS station KPIX-TV reports.

"I am so incredibly lucky to be alive," she told the station at her Orinda home Wednesday. "I mean, no question."

It all started when she went to check out noises in the cabin's kitchen early Saturday morning, and she found the bear rummaging through the freezer.

"It was like in an instant, oh my gosh, this is a bear, and the next thing that happens is that I'm being torn apart," she told KPIX-TV.

Von Hoffmann-Curzi told the station she thought the bear attacked her because she was blocking the door the animal used to enter the cabin.

"I'm screaming the whole time, screaming at the top of my lungs," she told KPIX-TV.

She said throwing a quilt over the bear helped her escape. According to SFGate, her husband and son woke up from the commotion and scared the bear off.

The state Department of Fish and Wildlife is investigating the attack and the bear will be euthanized if it's captured, SFGate reports, citing a spokesman.

Von Hoffmann-Curzi has stage 4 non-Hodgkin lymphoma, KPIX-TV reports. According to SFGate, the cabin was a refuge for her amid the COVID-19 pandemic, but she doesn't plan to return anytime soon.

"A bear mauling's not a little thing," she told KPIX-TV. "It's huge."

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