TAMPA, Fla. - The scars of Charles Aurelio's Friday now litter his chest in the form of ugly, red splotches.
Aurelio went door-to-door Friday morning, looking for work mowing yards. A man at a house on Park Circle in Tampa agreed to let Aurelio cut his house.
While Aurelio was near the front of the house, a hive of Africanized bees underneath the roof of the home attacked. A bee removal company later estimated there were 10,000-20,000 bees in the hive.
"I think I kind of disturbed them and the next thing I knew, they were all over me," Aurelio said. "When they're stinging you, you can't do anything about it but let them."
The person who lives at the house where Aurelio was mowing called 911. Tampa paramedics Sophia Cardenas and Justin Thompson came out to the house.
The bees were so ferocious that Cardenas and Thompson needed to wear coats and headgear to protect themselves. Still, Cardenas was stung multiple times on her cheek.
They were able to get Aurelio away from the hive and get the bees off of him. He was taken to the hospital, treated and released.
"He was definitely stung more than 100 times," Cardenas said. "He was stung on his head, his back. He was asking for help. He was very calm."
All Florida Bee Removal came out to the house to destroy the hive. They believe the Africanized bees were awakened by the vibrations of the lawn mower.
"They were aggressive and very terriotorial," said Kyle Harrison, a technician who destroyed the hive.
"Generally, it takes 500 stings to kill someone," Jonathan Simkins, from All Florida Bee Removal, said. "But if you're allergic, one will take care of you."
Aurelio is not allergic but he was stung hundreds of times. He considers himself very lucky, and plans to return to the house on Saturday to finish mowing the yard.
"Got to. I need the money," Aurelio said.
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Southbound Dale Mabry is closed from Columbus Ave. to Spruce after a pedestrian was hit and killed by a fuel tanker Friday morning. The roadway will remain closed throughout rush hour. Use Himes as an alternate route.