A DESPERATE mum-of-two drank her own urine to keep her two kids alive by breastfeeding them after their boat was smashed apart by a wave during an outing with pals.

Mariely Chacon, 40, sacrificed her own life to save those of her six-year-old son and two-year-old daughter by trying to stave off dehydration so they had a fighting chance of surviving the harrowing shipwreck.


She was left adrift with her kids, found clinging to their dead mum, and their 25-year-old nanny Veronica Martinez for four days in baking temperatures after heading out on a boat trip with family and friends that turned to disaster after a huge wave smashed the vessel’s hull.

They had left Higuerote in their native Venezuela for the uninhabited Caribbean island of La Tortuga off the country’s north coast on September 3 but never made it, sparking a rescue operation that led to the discovery of three of the survivors on an improvised lifeboat and their transfer to hospital.

The nanny was found in a small fridge where she had reportedly taken refuge to stay out of the sweltering heat.

Five people including Remis David Camblor, Mariely’s husband and the father of the children, are still said to be missing.

The kids and nanny were rushed to hospital so they could be treated for dehydration and first-degree burns.

Officials have confirmed Mariely, who died from organ failure caused by dehydration, kept her children alive by drinking her own urine so she could breastfeed them.

Her funeral took place on Saturday after officials confirmed her two kids, named as Jose David and Maria Beatriz Camblor Chacon, would pull through although they are thought to be suffering post-traumatic stress along with physical injuries.

The funeral was transmitted on YouTube so loved ones and well-wishers could follow it live online because of Covid restrictions.

The search is understood to be continuing for the missing five people, although hope of finding them alive is fading fast.

Confirming the launch of the search operation and the discovery of the three survivors, Venezuela’s National Maritime Authority INEA said in a statement: "On September 3 at 9.30am a pleasure boat called Thor left Higuerote for La Tortuga Island with the return scheduled for September 5.

"Port authorities were informed on September 5 around 11pm it had failed to reach its destination or returned to the location it had left from and a search operation was launched."

The mother who died kept her children alive by breastfeeding them and drinking her own urine

It added: "On September 6 at 6.20pm we were alerted to a small white vessel which was drifting off the island of La Orchila that led to the reorientation of the search operation.

"On September 7 at 2.10pm four people were rescued, two of them children, by coastguard vessel AB Carecare."

An INEA official acting as a spokesman for the organisation was quoted as saying: "The mother who died kept her children alive by breastfeeding them and drinking her own urine.

"She died three or four hours before the rescue from dehydration after drinking no water for three days."

He admitted their chances of survival would have been greatly increased if the group had had a radio or GPS or other security devices including flares.

Four of the other five missing people on board the boat have been named as Jose Javier Marcano Narvaez, Alejandro Osorio Graterol, Vianney Carolina Dos Santos Morales and Remis David Camblor who was said to have been acting as the boat skipper.


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