26 year-old Yang Yun was taking part in a free diving contest (without breathing equipment) in a beluga whale aquarium tank more than 20 feet deep chilled by arctic temperatures.
As she tried to return to the surface, she found her legs crippled by cramp from the freezing cold. At that point Mila the beluga whale came to her rescue.
Mila began to maneuver Yun with her mouth before clamping onto her leg and pushing her to the surface.
“I began to choke and sank even lower and I thought that was it for me – I was dead,” Yun told the Daily Mail. “Until I felt this incredible force under me driving me to the surface.”
“Mila noticed the problem before we did,” explained an organizer. “We suddenly saw the girl being pushed to the top of the pool with her leg in Mila’s mouth. She’s a sensitive animal who works closely with humans and I think this girl owes her life.”