King Charles Honors Twin Who Fought Crocodile Off Sister by Punching Its Snout During Attack

King Charles is honoring a brave sister who saved her twin’s life in a crocodile attack

Published Time: 14.05.2024 - 14:31:17 Modified Time: 14.05.2024 - 14:31:17

King Charles is honoring a brave sister who saved her twin’s life in a crocodile attack.

Georgia Laurie, 31, from Berkshire, England, has received the King’s Gallantry Medal after fighting off a crocodile as it viciously attacked her twin sister Melissa while on a volunteering vacation in Puerto Escondido, Mexico, in June 2021.Georgia is among five people who have been honored with the Medal, according to a news release from the U.K. government's Cabinet Office.

The alarming incident occurred on June 6 as the sisters were swimming in the river with a pair of brothers. The group had joined other tourists for a guided river tour in a lagoon in the area at the time, per the BBC.

Melissa was the first to spot the crocodile swimming near them, urging her sibling and the brothers to swim to safety on the river bank — however, the crocodile snatched her just as Georgia was being pulled onto the bank by one of the other excursion members.

“We were all calling out for her, but I’m on my own at this point,” Georgia told U.K. newspaper The Times. “I can’t see the brothers, but I can hear them. I’m screaming out for Melissa. ‘Where are you?’ Where’s Melissa? And there’s no response ... And I was just thinking, ‘I can’t leave. How can I live with myself if I leave?’ "

Georgia then returned to the water, where she was alerted to the unconscious body of her sister Melissa floating “face down in the water” by one of the brothers following the crocodile's attack.. 

“She doesn’t look alive. She was blue," she recalled to the outlet. "I grab her, I’m screaming to try and wake her up, slapping her face."

Georgia managed to revive her sister, but the nightmare wasn’t over for Melissa. The crocodile returned, biting her ankle and dragging her away. 

Taking the initiative in that moment, Georgia repeatedly punched the crocodile’s snout, unlocking her sister from its grip and allowing her to start dragging Melissa out of the water by her hair.

“But then I see this crocodile coming back towards me again and I’m just thinking, ‘Oh, he’s gotta be kidding me’. It started to death roll," she told The Times

“I was in a bubble. All my senses were heightened but it was just me and my fight against the crocodile. I’m knee deep in water by this time and I was just punching the crocodile on t -

he snout, hammering it with my fists while trying to hold onto Melissa and keep her up. I’d heard that if you punched a shark on the nose it could deter it."

"I drew such deep strength from somewhere, from her, from my love for Melissa and eventually the crocodile moved off,” she added to the outlet.

While punching the crocodile, Georgia sustained her own injuries after the reptile bit her hand. Meanwhile, Melissa was left with several deep bite wounds to her abdomen, leg and foot and an open fracture on her wrist, per the BBC.

"It all happened very quickly,” she recalled to BBC Breakfast. "When I was bitten and dragged under water I thought, 'That's it I'm a goner'. I could feel myself losing grip of our bond when I was on the boat. I was saying, 'Hug me Georgia, hug me I'm dying.’ I was biting onto her shoulder to stay connected to her."

Melissa said her sister sang Ben E. King’s “Stand By Me” and Bob Marley's “Don't Worry About A Thing” to her during the attack to keep her calm. She was then sent to a local hospital where she was treated by a specialist doctor and has since made a full recovery, per The Times.

Speaking in reaction to receiving the King’s Gallantry Medal for her bravery in the attack, Georgia told the BBC, "It's an honor, I was so shocked when I received the letter because I didn't see it coming, I didn't expect it.”

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The sisters both developed post-traumatic stress disorder following the attack, and they continue to deal with the condition three years later. On Aug. 11, they will swim in the Thames Marathon in support of the charity organization PTSD UK, supporting those suffering with the same disorder.

Despite the troubling impact of the experience, Georgia shared that, while horrifying, it made her and her sister “much closer as a result.”

"What's made this story so incredible is Melissa's unwavering bravery throughout it all because she was so strong during it and I don't think I would be here without her, she really gave me the strength to keep fighting," she added.

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