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This is a truly amazing tale that involves a woman, a horse, and a group of dedicated rescuers on a beach in Australia.

A woman was out for an afternoon ride with her daughter when her horse suddenly sunk neck deep into the thick mud of Avalon Beach in Geelong, Victoria.

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What followed, reports Newspix, was a grueling three-hour rescue caught in photos. As Nicole Graham held the head of 18-year-old Astro from drowning in the rising tide, members of the fire department, emergency services, and a vet attempted to free the 1,100-pound horse.

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First they tried using fire hoses, then a winch. Making little progress, the vet, Stacey Sullivan, sedated him so that he could be pulled out with a tractor.

Throughout it all, Graham stayed waist high in the mud, calming the horse through every attempt and holding his nose above the water. Luckily they were able to pull him clear before the tide came in.