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Justin Glawe, Forum News Service , Published August 29 2013

Wolf suspected in Minn. attack not rabid, tests show

BEMIDJI, Minn. – Reporters: Stop calling Noah Graham.

The 16-year-old from Solway who survived a wolf attack last weekend has been fielding calls from national media outlets since his story ran in the Bemidji Pioneer on Tuesday. And now he wants things to go back to normal.

“I am ready for it to be done, I suppose,” he said by phone Thursday.

But, unfortunately for Graham, this thing isn’t done yet. That’s because Thursday brought two bits of news. One, the wolf trapped and killed Monday after the attack was not rabid, fueling speculation as to the reason for the incident at a campground at Lake Winnibigoshish.

Two, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources remains unsure that the wolf it captured and killed was Graham’s attacker.

A sweatshirt Graham was wearing during the attack and a blanket from the campsite were sent to the University of California-Davis for DNA testing, the DNR said Thursday. Lab workers there will try to match hair on the items to the wolf in question.

After the initial story broke, news outlets and media websites nationally and internationally jumped on the bandwagon. Graham’s tale was featured on CNN and NBC’s “Today” show, among others.

“I’ve had five (calls) from TV,” he said, “and I still have two, no wait, three radio things to do and I talked to a magazine today.”

Graham said he’s been in quite a bit of pain since the attack.

“I’m still pretty sore,” he said. “Sleeping is hard.”

And it’s made harder by reporters.

“I get about four hours of sleep every night. I wake up to calls and I go to sleep with calls,” Graham said. “I’m over it. It’s not a big deal.”