Eugene Bozzi’s children were playing outside her home in Orange County, Fla. On Tuesday.
“They were on bikes, they were on skates, they were having fun. Then they hear whistles,” Bozzi, 36, told ABC News.
Bozzi’s family knew the noise was coming from the bushes in a neighbor’s yard.
“My daughter came looking for me. I couldn’t really see him, so I got closer to him, and he backed up a bit, and I was like, ‘he’s a little fat,’” Bozzi said afterwards. come face-to-face with the alligator.
The father immediately took action.
“I was going to put my shoes on. I had flip flops; everyone’s laughing at me (for that),” Bozzi said.
That’s right – Bozzi faced off against an angry alligator … in flip-flops.
And he was armed with the best thing he could find.
“Let me collect the trash!” ” he said.
It was a showdown between an alligator and a guy with his trash.
With the trash, Bozzi was able to save the gator. He opened the lid of the box and waited for the alligator to approach.
Once the alligator’s head entered the trash can, Bozzi closed the lid.
“It was like two six-year-old boys were trying to get out of there. You know, six-year-old boys, you can’t hold them back,” Bozzi told WPVI-TV in Philadelphia.
The North Philly native, still in flip flops, crossed the street with the gator and walked down the hill.
He eventually rolled the trash can to the water’s edge, quickly dropped it, and ran away. The alligator slowly came out of the trash.
Bozzi came back and pushed the box away, which gave the alligator a nudge to get into the water. He then retrieved his trash.
Bozzi said that was the only time he was really scared.
“When I got down on the hill I thought ‘if I put it down there might be three more in the bushes,” Bozzi said with a laugh.
His neighbors and several of the millions who have seen the now-viral video have called Bozzi a hero. But he’s just glad no one was hurt, including the gator.
“I love all animals. I don’t care how vicious they are, how heavy they are, how small they are; we’re connected somehow. We’re on that. planet. I think it was my duty to protect everyone and the animal did well, “said Bozzi.
Bozzi has only been living in Florida for a year.
He says since this video went viral he has received calls from talk shows around the world, including Australia.
As for next time, Bozzi says there won’t be. You only have to wrestle with an alligator and win once.
Copyright © 2021 WLS-TV. All rights reserved.