(ST. LOUIS) — Andrew Oberle, the 26-year-old Texas graduate student who was attacked by chimpanzees at a South African reserve, is back in the United States and recovering at a St. Louis hospital, his family told ABC News on Tuesday.
Oberle, who went to South Africa hoping to find ways to help chimpanzees, had to undergo multiple surgeries after the animals he was trying to protect turned on him in a violent attack.
Oberle, who was studying anthropology at the University of Texas at San Antonio, was leading a tour at the Jane Goodall Institute Chimpanzee Eden near Johannesburg in June when reports say he left the group and crossed one of two fences separating him from the animals.
When he neared the second fence, which was electrified, two chimpanzees reached underneath and pulled him by his feet into their enclosure. Oberle was attacked by the animals and dragged half a mile before armed guards and staff members were able to enter the enclosure and rescue him.
Oberle’s parents say he is now undergoing treatment at the St. Louis University Hospital in St. Louis. He left Millpark Hospital in Johannesburg a week ago, his family said.
His condition was not immediately clear.
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Steve Almasy and Chris Boyette, CNN
Patrick Gillespie, CNN
Eugene Scott, CNN
Dave Gilbert, CNN