Hanna Pignato, from Daytona Beach in the US state of Florida, broke bones in her back and foot after heroically jumped off a pier when she saw a young boy get into trouble.
As she jumped in she hit a sand bar and had to be rescued along with the boy.
“I was just thinking that could be my little sister I would hope someone would save,” she told the Daytona Beach News Journal.
“So I jumped.”
Posting on her Instagram account, Ms Pignato said she was lucky to be alive.
“My dumb*** broke my back and foot,” she said.
“Thankful to be alive.”
Ocean Rescue Captain Tammy Malphurs told Daytona Beach News Journal Ms Pignato’s heart was in the right place but she did not encourage people to attempt to rescue those drowning.
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