It's not every day that the death of a cow warrants mention -- but the tale of heroism of one brave bovine who recently passed on will no doubt live on for years to come.
A decade ago, on a dairy farm in New Zealand, an otherwise unremarkable cow, known simply as Cow 569, gained international attention after saving her farmer from being swept away in a flood, earning her a the distinction of hero.
On a particularly rainy night near her farm in Woodville, Kim Riley ventured out to make sure her cattle were safe in the storm. When she noticed that some cow had been spooked into entering the swollen river that runs through the property, she hurried ahead of them in the water to try and head them off to higher ground. But before she knew it, Kim found that she was the one who needed help.
"Then I realized that I was floating," she tells the Fairfax NZ News. "It was just suddenly that the ground was not there anymore."
For more than 30 minutes, Kim and cows struggled to find their footing in the floodwater. Downstream, the weakened farmer noticed the cattle -- who she says are fantastic swimmers -- heading towards an accessible section of dry land on the shore. As she struggled to do the same, Kim noticed an animal, Cow 569, heading in her direction.