Yesterday, 26-year-old professional surfer Maya Gabeira tried to break the world record for the largest wave ever surfed. That record was set on the same beach—Nazaré, Portugal—by Garret McNamara on January 2013. Unlie McNamara, Maya failed and nearly died in the process. What followed was an spectacular rescue that almost failed.
Maya fell and couldn't recover. She was trying to desperately stay afloat in terrible sea conditions, with 95-foot-high wave crashing all around her. Team mate Carlos Burle tried to rescue her on the jet ski but, according to his testimony in the video, she didn't have any strength left to catch the board he threw at her: "Then she disappeared. Thankfully, she appeared again. That's when I jump into the water to rescue her."
You can see her holding a rope being dragged by the jet ski, obviously getting a ton of water inside her in the process and falling flat at the end. Watching the video is kind of frustrating, as the waves kept trying to claim her body even while they thought she was safe on the sand.
Thankfully, Maya is now fine.