There are questions that should not be answered. The mystery is part of their appeal. Who is the Naked Shark Man? That’s one of them. The internet, though, has an insatiable curiosity. It has to know. And Naked Shark Man looks very similar to a couple of other notable Americans who really want the actual Naked Shark Man to step up and accept his 15 minutes of fame.
— Anneka Svenska (@AnnekaSvenska) May 5, 2017
And now the Orlando Sentinel has published an answer. Sort of.
Naked Shark Man is “a man named ‘Shawn’ from upstate New York.” He is, according to the Sentinel, a former New York City police officer.
David Pingalore, sports anchor for WKMG-TV in Orlando, said he had identified Naked Shark Man.
“This guy lives in upstate New York, that photo was taken two years ago off the shores of Long Island — not in Florida,” Pingalore said on a local radio show. “I have the man that’s fully clothed that’s naked on the shark, on the boat. Yes, normal photographs.”
Pingalore reportedly has photos of Naked Shark Man with his clothes on. He also claims that Naked Shark Man now fears for his life.
He is considering meeting with Florida Gators football coach Jim McElwain. McElwain was one of those that many on the internet thought could be Naked Shark Man. He does live in Florida.
“I was on the phone with Steve McClain [Florida’s senior associate athletics director for football],” Pingalore said. “The naked man wanted to meet Coach McElwain, then all of a sudden — an hour later — he flipped and got scared.”
“The man that is naked on the shark is afraid for his life because he believes bounty hunters — I’m not making this up — and people with shark people [see above], whatever those people would be called … he’s afraid because the New York Post put up an article about ‘who is this naked man’ on the naked shark,” Pingalore added.
So there you have it, shark people. You have Naked Shark Man scared.
“That picture was on the internet two years ago. This woman from the United Kingdom had send the tweet out, then Deadspin, what they did, was [ask] ‘is this Jim McElwain or not?’ They didn’t say it was.”
“They were mocking, according to this gentlemen, I guess in the UK there’s some websites that naked women get on sharks, so they were trying to mock what women were doing with sharks.”
Websites. More than one. Now, quickly, jump over to google and check the veracity of that last statement. Or don’t.
The other guess for Naked Shark Man’s identity was Jimmy John Liautaud, founder of Jimmy John’s. Liautaud also denies his involvement.