Zanele Ndlovu would have nursed only thoughts of the most beautiful thing on earth — marriage happening to her as she planned to walk down the aisle with her Fiance, Jamie Fox till her story decided to play out an unwritten part of the script.

Ndlovu and Fox were on an adventure tour on the expansive Zambezi River, among the longest in Africa that feeds into Victoria Falls, when a crocodile broadsided their inflated canoe like a scaly, razor-tipped torpedo. She toppled into the river as the Nile crocodile held the canoe in its jaws, Adventure Zone tour company owner Brent Williamson says The Washington Post.

Williamson, who co-led the tour, rushed to rescue Ndlovu from the water. The crocodile bit his canoe, puncturing the pontoon and sending him into the water alongside a guide trainee. Ndlovu possibly stepped on the crocodile, Williamson said, and it clamped down on her upper biceps.

 Another trainee, identified only as Norman, gripped her life jacket and tried to pull her into his canoe, but the force of the crocodile also sent him falling into the river. He never let go, even as the other trainee pulled him out and set him back in the canoe.

It was then, Williamson said, the crocodile went for the kill. “The croc kept holding on and then attempted the death roll,” he said, describing the violent, crashing tumble crocodiles use to drown and dismember their prey for easier swallowing.

The roll broke Ndlovu’s arm, tore away her biceps and stripped her limb of upper ligaments, Williamson said. The crocodile then relented and released her. Williamson climbed into another canoe and provided first aid on a river bank while a rescue helicopter arrived 45 minutes later.

She arrived at a nearby hospital, stabilized, and then, he said, went to the Mater Dei Hospital in Bulawayo by ambulance, nearly 300 miles from Victoria Falls. Doctors immediately decided to amputate her arm, he said.

Life can be unpredictable but that did not end the love tale of 25-year-old Zanele and Jamie as she said “I do” donning her adorable snow-coloured laced gown on her wedding day with a gauze wound tightly around what remains of her right arm.
The venue changed, but the wedding date stayed the same.

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