Aerial view of the Tortuga island, in the south of the Caribbean Sea, Venezuela. This is where the family's boat capsized.
  • A Venezuelan mother died while saving her children after a boat they were on capsized this month.
  • While drifting on a lifeboat for days, Mariely Chacón drank her own urine to breastfeed her kids.
  • Rescuers found the children, aged 2 and 6, clinging to their mother, who died of dehydration.
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A woman from Venezuela has been hailed a hero for keeping her children alive after the boat they were on capsized, leaving them all to drift in the sea for four days, Newsweek reported.

Mariely Chacón, her husband, and their two children, aged 6 and 2, were on a pleasure cruise from Higuerote to Tortuga island, Venezuela, with five other people when a large wave split the boat's hull apart on September 3.

The incident forced the group to spend four days adrift on a small lifeboat in the scorching sun.

To keep her children alive, Chacón drank her urine, which allowed her to breastfeed them, Newsweek reported.

The children, identified as Jose David and Maria Beatriz Camblor Chacón, were discovered alive by rescuers earlier this week. They were found clinging to their mother, who had died from dehydration.

"The mother who died kept her children alive by breastfeeding them and drinking her own urine," a spokesman for Instituto Nacional de los Espacios Acuáticos (INEA) said, according to the New York Post. "She died three or four hours before the rescue from dehydration after drinking no water for three days."

The children's nanny, 25-year-old Veronica Martinez, was also found alive on the lifeboat. She was treated for first-degree burns and dehydration, according to the New York Post.

The other five people, including the children's father, have not yet been found. The INEA spokesperson said there is very little chance of finding them.

Chacón's death has shocked the nation. Her funeral was held on September 11 and was broadcast on YouTube.

Her father, Humberto Chacón, said the pleasure cruise was "simply a family trip to entertain the children," according to Newsweek.


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