Man Fired For Wrestling Shark While on "Sick Leave"

By Sugee Kim
|  Wednesday, Mar 13, 2013  |  Updated 8:54 AM PDT
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Man Fired For Wrestling Shark While on "Sick Leave"

Paul Marshallsea grabbed the dusky whaler shark (not pictured) by the tail and guided it to deeper waters.

A Welsh charity worker on “sick leave for stress” was vacationing in Australia where he made headlines after wrestling a shark away from children, the BBC reported. While beach goers and lifeguards praised Paul Marshallsea for his bravery, his bosses disagreed.

Marshallsea, 62, and his wife, Wendy, 56, were in Bulcock Beach when 6-foot-long dusky whaler shark swam up to shallow waters. A nearby local TV crew was able to film Marshallsea grabbing the shark by the tail and guiding it into deeper waters.

Marshallsea reportedly came home to a letter of dismissal from the Pant and Dowlais Boys and Girls Club where he had worked for 10 years as a project coordinator. The Club's trustees wrote, “Whilst unfit to work you were well enough to travel to Australia and, according to recent news footage of yourself in Queensland, you allegedly grabbed a shark by the tail and narrowly missed being bitten by quickly jumping out of the way,” the BBC reported.

The charity worker argued that he and Wendy, who was also fired from the charity, were advised by a doctor to take a break from work.

“I didn’t have a broken leg or a bad back, I had work related stress,” Marshallsea told the BBC.

In a second letter, the trustee cited Marshallsea’s termination with the charity as a "breakdown" of confidence and trust.

According to the BBC, the Pants and Dowlais Boys and Girls Club was advised not to comment on the matter.

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