As Katie Malone launched into the air on a parasail in Mexico, ominous storm clouds filled the sky. But she never imagined her rope would snap in the rough winds, leaving her drifting over a thousand feet in the air.
Parasailing, although exhilarating, can also be incredibly dangerous, which Malone learned firsthand during the terrifying ordeal.
“Everything just broke loose, and I just started praying, you know, please don’t let me be paralyzed, don’t let me die,” Malone told Inside Edition.
The 31-year-old massage therapist from outside San Diego was violently tossed around for 45 minutes, before crashing two miles away. She was medevaced from Mexico to San Diego, where doctors put her jaw back together with 14 screws. Altogether, she broke 11 bones, including her skull, jaw bone and cheek bone.
"Very lucky to be alive," Malone said. "When I was spinning out of control coming down, I just didn't know if this was gonna be it or not."
Parasailing horrors have happened in Mexico before and are often triggered by rough weather. In 2012, a gust of wind blew a 9-year-old into a building. He survived.
When Inside Edition investigated parasailing operations in Mexico in 2014, one crew sent Lisa Guerrero into the air as storm clouds loomed above — a situation eerily reminiscent of what happened to Malone.
Before Malone went up, a weather warning had been issued earlier that day, according to her attorney Michael Winkleman.
“Despite clear warnings in the area for severe weather, as well as just visually looking at the sky, they still went out, they still took Katie in the air and they exposed her to what could have been fatal risk,” Winkleman told Inside Edition.
Today, Katie’s mom is just happy her daughter is alive. “It was literally the worst thing I’ve ever been through in my whole life,” her mom said.
Malone has filed a lawsuit against the parasailing company and the resort where they were operating. The resort said they don't comment on pending litigation and the operator didn't return our calls.