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Man stung by bees 20,000 times while removing tree branches in Ohio

A photo shared to a GoFundMe page shows Austin Bellamy in hospital after he was stung approximately 20,000 times by bees. GoFundMe / Shawna Carter

An Ohio man is in hospital after he was stung approximately 20,000 times by bees while cutting tree branches last week, his family said.

Austin Bellamy, 20, was helping trim some tree branches on a lemon tree last Friday when he accidentally cut into a nest full of Africanized killer bees, his mother Shawna Carter wrote on a GoFundMe created to help with Bellamy’s hospital bills.

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“He was just covered in bees,” Carter told WCPO. “Screaming and yelling, crying for help.”

Carter told the outlet that her son was put into a medically induced coma over the weekend at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center.

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She confirmed to FOX19 that he woke up from the coma Wednesday.

His grandmother, Phyllis Edwards, was standing below the tree when the bees attacked, but said she was unable to help because she was also under attack.

“When he started cutting them, that’s when the bees came out, and he tried to anchor himself down, and he couldn’t,” Phyllis told FOX19. “He was hollering, ‘Help! Help me! Help!’ And nobody would help him.”

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“I was going to try and climb the ladder to get to Austin… I seen how high he was … but I couldn’t get to him because I was surrounded in bees,” she said.

Bellamy was eventually rescued by the local fire department. Not only was Bellamy stung tens of thousands of times, but the GoFundMe claims he also swallowed about 30 of the insects as well.

“So he had bees inside of him, and they suctioned bees out of him until Sunday morning,” Carter told FOX19.

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Carter told WCPO that the local fire department told her the bees were killer bees. Per the outlet, the Southwest Ohio Beekeepers Association said a bee sample would be needed to identify the type of bee.

Carter told FOX19 that she passed out upon receiving the news that her son had been stung so many times.

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“It was just too much for me to take.”

“It looked like he had a black blanket on his head down to his neck, down to his arms,” she explained, adding that “he had bees inside of him, and they suctioned bees out of him until Sunday morning.”

As of Thursday morning, the GoFundMe had surpassed its goal of US$10,000.

Doctors say that Bellamy is expected to make a full recovery.

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