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Bethany Meilani Hamilton

Bethany Meilani Hamilton
The American professional surfer Bethany Meilani Hamilton known for surviving a shark attack in which she lost her left arm, and for overcoming the injury to ultimately return to professional surfing. Soul Surfer is a True Story of Faith, Family, and Fighting to Get Back on the Board wrote by her. In April 2011, the feature film Soul Surfer was released, based on the book and additional interviews. She has appeared on many television shows since the loss of her arm.

Bellow a little biography about her, take from her website


Bethany Hamilton has become a source of inspiration to millions through her story of faith, determination, and hope. Born into a family of surfers on February 8, 1990, on the island of Kauai, Hawaii, Bethany began surfing at a young age. At the age of eight, Bethany entered her first surf competition, the Rell Sun Menehune event on Oahu, where she won both the short and long board divisions. This sparked a love for surf competition within her spirit.

At the age of thirteen, on October 31, 2003, Bethany was attacked by a 14-foot tiger shark while surfing off Kauai’s North Shore. The attack left Bethany with a severed left arm. After losing over 60% of her blood, and making it through several surgeries without infection, Bethany was on her way to recovery with an unbelievably positive attitude. Lifeguards and doctors believe her strong water sense and faith in God helped get her through the traumatic ordeal.

Miraculously, just one month after the attack, Bethany returned to the water to continue pursuing her goal to become a professional surfer. In January of 2004, Bethany made her return to surf competition; placing 5th in the Open Women’s division of that contest. With no intention of stopping, Bethany continued to enter and excel in competition. Just over a year after the attack she took 1st place in the Explorer Women’s division of the 2005 NSSA National Championships – winning her first National Title.

Bethany Meilani Hamilton
In 2007, Bethany realized her dream and turned pro. Bethany has since participated in numerous ASP and World Tour Events with her major highlight being a second place finish in the ASP 2009 World Junior Championships. (See Career Highlights and Surf Related News for more results)

Since losing her arm, Bethany’s story has been told in hundreds of media outlets and she has been recognized with numerous awards, public appearances, and various speaking engagements. (See Awards & Appearances)

Bethany Meilani Hamilton
In October 2004, Bethany shared her life story in her autobiography entitled Soul Surfer. Seven years later, the bookwas made into a major motion picture bearing the same title which released theatrically in April, and for home entertainment in August, 2011. Other books Bethany has written include “Devotions for the Soul Surfer,” “Rise Above,” A “Soul Surfer” Bible, “Ask Bethany,” and “Clash,” “Burned,” “Storm,” and “Crunch.” (See Books for publishing information) Further, Bethany was the inspiration behind Becky Baumgartner’s 2007 documentary entitled Heart of a Soul Surfer.

From a young age, Bethany’s parents instilled their faith in Jesus Christ; and at age 5, she made the decision to have a personal relationship with Him. Bethany’s foundation of faith has been her backbone; her source of truth, hope, and strength.

Out of the water, Bethany has grown from a young teenage girl with aspirations of becoming a professional surfer into a twenty-year old professional surfer with aspirations of becoming a beacon of inspiration and hope. Through the platform of professional sport, Bethany has been able to touch a large number of people with her message, charitable efforts, and overall spirit. Bethany just launched her own foundation, Friends of Bethany, which supports shark attack survivors, traumatic amputees, and serves to inspire others through her life story, and is involved in numerous other charitable efforts. (See Give Back for more charitable partnerships)

Bethany Meilani Hamilton
Bethany’s story is continually growing as she strives to be the best at whatever God calls her to do. The future is truly wide open for this young soul surfer!

Surfing career

2010 –Bethany currently ranks 20th on the 2010 ASP Women’s Tour.

  • Oct 7-11: WCT- Rip Curl Pro at Portugal: 9th Place
  • Aug 23-29: Cabreiroa Surfing Girls at Pantin-Spain: 19th Place.
  • Aug 10-15: Billabong Women’s Azores Island Pro at Sao Miguel-Azores Islands: 13th Place
  • Aug 2-7: Hurley US Open of Surfing at Huntington Beach, CA- USA: 25th Place
  • May 12-16: Swatch Hossegor Pro at Hossegor, Landes-France: 19TH Place
  • May 7-9: Estoril Billabong Girls at Guincho, Cascais-Portal: 19th Place
  • Mar 15-21: Drug Aware PRO at Margaret River, Australia: 25th Place
  • Jan 9-17: The Billabong World Junior Championship at Sydney, Australia: 9th Place

Bethany Meilani Hamilton

  • Finished 14th on ASP’s World Qualifying/Star series rankings
  • Nov 27-28: WCT- Gidget Pro: 13th Place
  • October: Rio Surf International in Rio de Janiero, Brazil: 3rd place
  • July 18-19: Nike 6.0 Junior Pro: 9th Place
  • July 22-25: Hurley US Open of Surfing: 13th Place
  • May 1-3: Estoril Billabong Girls Pro: 25th Place
  • May 30-April 5: Drug Aware Pro: 25th Place
  • April 7-15: Women’s Pipeline Pro Fundraiser for Girl Scouts: 17th Place
  • Jan 3-6: Billabong ASP World Junior Championship – AUS: 2nd Place

Bethany Meilani Hamilton

  • Finished 14th on the ASP’s World Qualifying/Star Series Rankings
  • Nov 12-23: Reef Hawaiian Pro – Alii Beach, Haleiwa, Oahu, HI, USA: 17th Place
  • Oct 1-12: Rio de Janeiro International – BRAZIL: 9th Place.
  • July 31-Aug 3: Billabong Girls Cascais Festival – Cascais, PORTUGAL: 13th Place
  • July 23- 26: US Open of Surfing – Huntington Beach, CA: 5th Place
  • June 30- July 5: Mr. Price Pro – Durban, SOUTH AFRICA: 25th Place
  • June 17-21” Billabong ECO Surf Festival – BRAZIL: 19th Place
  • April 7-12: Drug Aware Pro West AUSTRALIA: 13th Place
  • Mar 31-April 5: Midori Pro – NSW, AUSTRALIA: 37th Place
  • Mar 10-15: Arrive Alive Central Coast Pro NSW, Australia: 9th Place
  • Jan 21-27: Roxy Pro Surf Festival – Phillip Island, AUS: 3rd Place

Bethany Meilani Hamilton

  • Dec 26-27: Roxy Pro Hawaii (trials) – Sunset Beach, Oahu: DNQ
  • Nov 12-14: Reef Hawaiian Pro – Haleiwa, OAHU, HI: 13th Place
  • July 25-28: Honda/Oneill US Open of Surfing – CALIFORNIA: 13th Place
  • Jul 1-10: Mr. Price Pro- Dairy Beach to New Pier in Durban: 25th Place
  • Mar 18-21: NSSA Regionals: 5th Place
  • Mar 8-17: Midori Pro – AUSTRALIA: Round of 72
  • Mar 2-7: Women’s Pipeline Championship: 4th Place

Bethany Meilani Hamilton

  • NSSA National Championship: 18-and-under Finalist: 5th place
  • Competed on the ISA Hawaii Team.
  • Hawaii Team Highlights: 4th at Brazil event and 5th at World Games event in USA.


  • Champion in NSSA National Competition
  • Champion O’Neill Island Girl Junior Pro tournament.

Bethany Meilani Hamilton

  • Jan: First competition with one arm: NSSA Regional Event: 5th place
  • NSSA National Championship: 18-and-under Finalist


  • NSSA National Championships: 2nd place
  • Nov 26, 2003 (26 days after the shark bite): Returned to surfing with only one arm


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