Feared dead, Natalia Molchanova world’s ‘greatest freediver’
The 53-year-old was diving for fun off Formentera, a Spanish island near Ibiza, when she failed to surface.
Search efforts have been continuing but it is feared she may have been caught up in strong underwater currents.
Her passion for freediving – diving while holding one’s breath -“burned so deep inside of her that she dedicated her life to it”, her family said.
She was a competitive swimmer as a young woman but left the sport to have a family, going on to take up freediving some 20 years later.
Ms Molchanova had been diving at 30-40m – “well within her depth range”, he said.
“The area is known for strong currents, so she would have been aware of it, but the sea is unpredictable, so no matter how you train… if you get caught in strong currents and it takes you in the wrong direction, there’s not much you can do.”