Woman attacked by bull: 'I knew it was coming'

Desiree Cicero describes being attacked by bull at event in DeLand


DeLAND, Fla. – A woman who was attacked by a bull Saturday at a Volusia County rodeo event told WKMG-TV she thought she was going to die.

Desiree Cicero had just jumped into the bull ring for the "money grab" game, a tradition at the annual Cracker Day festival at the arena next to the Volusia County Fairgrounds in DeLand.

Cicero said she was knocked out for two minutes and did not wake up until she heard her daughter screaming.

Meanwhile, new YouTube video shows the disturbing attack from different angles. Cicero said the video is hard to watch.


"All I remember is the impact -- and my kid screaming," said Cicero. "He hit me in my back, on my side, where I have my broken rib. I knew it was coming. I mean it felt like being hit by a bull. There is no other way to describe it."

Lying in her bed with a dislocated shoulder, broken rib, hole in her arm and scratches all over, Desiree recounts the moments she thought she died, trampled, then gored by a bull.

"Just the fact that the bull had time to circle and come back and, you know, just run over me again -- it's just crazy," said Cicero.

She said 19-year-old John Weideman-Beal, who serves in the Marines, helped protect her. Weideman-Beal was in the game for the rush, but the rush he'd get wouldn't be from a bull charging at them.

"He got me right in the head, I mean, I think that should have killed me and it's an act of God that it didn't," said Weideman-Beal.

A woman, a competitor, a complete stranger was lying helpless. Immediately, his instincts of being a Marine kicked in.


"You may be the only person in there that can help somebody," Weideman-Beal said. "Here I am trying to take care of her, even the rodeo clowns scattered. The crowd gasps, and I'm getting pummeled in the back, back of the head."

"The second time the bull came around, (John) actually jumped on me to shield me from the bull, and he ended up getting kicked," said Cicero. "He's like yeah, I just had to do what I had to do. I saw that bull coming and I just had to jump on you."

Desiree said watching the video makes her emotional.

"Knowing that I was that close to having my life taken away from me; it's devastating," she said.

Desiree said she wanted to thank John, calling him very brave.

"I want to say thank you to John for doing what he did and saving my life. He's an excellent guy," said Cicero.

"You're very welcome. It's the least I could do; better you living and me in a little pain than anything else that could have happened," said Weideman-Beal.

Kim Minot and her daughter Allyson were watching from the stands when the trampling occurred.

"The same bull came on back down and turned and looked at her and came right at her a second time," said Minot, who added that as dangerous as the contest is, it's a ll part of the show.  "I was actually surprised at the amount of women out there, chasing the bulls. It's crazy but it's rodeo."

Police said about eight minutes prior to the bull incident, a woman had fallen off of a horse at the same event.  It's not known if she was seriously injured.