WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT: Father defends his children as monkeys lunge at family
Couple Riley and Elayna sail the world on their boat La Vagabonde, recording their adventures – including an encounter with violent monkeys in Thailand. (Courtesy: Sailing La Vagabonde/YouTube / @riley.whitelum / @elayna.carausu)
An Australian father defended his young kids from some aggressive monkeys, eventually having to punch one of the critters as they lunged at his family and their belongings.
“It was hectic. It was actually scary, could have scared him (Darwin) for life,” Riley Whitelum said after the incident.
Whitelum and his partner, Elayna Carausu, video blog their family’s adventures sailing the world on their boat, La Vagabonde. The couple’s YouTube channel has over 1.8 million subscribers.
In a recent post, the couple stopped off in Thailand for some snorkeling, but while Carausu was off exploring a reef, Whitelum and his kids found themselves surrounded by a group of monkeys. The full video can be watched here.
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Riley Whitelum, one half of the influencer couple behind the account Sailing La Vagabonde, faced off with monkeys in Thailand after they went after his kids. (Sailing La Vagabonde/YouTube)
The couple traveled with their friends Forrest and Leyla, who helped them maintain order aboard their boat. Whitelum and Forrest stayed on shore and looked for monkeys, but Carausu noted that if they had known how frequently people report monkey attacks on the island, they wouldn’t have visited.
Whitelum and his two kids watched as the monkeys wandered over to where they had camped out, then tried to chase the monkeys off when they went after the family’s bag, which had phones, wallets and passports in it.
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Riley Whitelum tried to scare off monkeys that were going through his family’s belongings, where they kept their phones, passports and wallets while swimming. (Sailing La Vagabonde/YouTube)
A monkey then lunged at one of the boys, Darwin, and Whitelum took a swipe at it. He then yelled at the monkeys and tried to square up to them in order to scare them off so he could rescue his bag, but the monkeys ganged up on him.
Eventually he got the bag and had to also take a couple more swings at the monkeys, leaving him with a bleeding cut on his hand from a monkey’s tooth.
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Riley Whitelum sustained an injury while fighting off wild monkeys in Thailand, requiring shots to prevent potential rabies infection. (Sailing La Vagabonde/YouTube)
Carausu heard the commotion on the beach and looked over to see everyone gathering around something, only learning when she returned to shore that it was her family at the center of attention. Whitelum criticized the onlookers for not trying at all to help, saying it was “astonishing” that they left him to have a “punch up with a dozen monkeys.”
Investigating the risks afterward revealed that Whitelum was at risk of rabies, prompting a trip to the hospital where he received the first of a series of preventative shots.
“I need to have five or more needles into my wound or around it, then five shots over 20 days, then another shot today,” Whitelum explained on the video. “So two shots today and five in my finger, and another four shots over the next 20 days.”
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Whitelum and Carausu, both from Australia, have traveled for almost nine years, recording and posting almost daily. Carausu admitted they hadn’t done much research before their most recent stop, saying, “Had we had known this beach was notorious for monkey attacks, we wouldn’t have gone.”
Peter Aitken is a Fox News Digital reporter with a focus on national and global news.