In February 1962, while vacationing in the Bahamas; Mickey, Jayne and hotel promotion man Jack Drury rented a boat to go water skiing. While water skiing, Jayne lost her balance and fell into the water. Mickey later wrote about the accident saying: "Jayne got too daring and skidded around a wave on one ski, lost her balance and plopped into the ocean. The side of the boat hit her. I couldn’t see Jayne at all, just the foam marking the spot she had hit. I dived in the water and swam to that spot. Jack motored the boat there. Lungs bursting, I held Jayne with one arm and swam toward the shadow of the boat. She grabbed subconsciously for the boat rim and pulled, catapulting Jack in the water and capsizing the boat." The trio became lost at sea and spent the night on a tiny coral island, they were presumed dead. Rescuers found them a day later and Jayne was then hospitalized for exposure and shock. She also had mosquito and sand flea bites.
The media suggested that this was all one big publicity stunt or a publicity stunt gone wrong. Jayne never liked to talk about the accident. One interviewer asked her if she stood why people felt she had set this up and she responded: "If I had twin babies people would think it was for a publicity stunt. I never thought in my life after having gone through what we went through down there that anyone could doubt it being true. I even don’t like to discuss it, it was through the wonderful help of the dear Lord that we were saved."
Courtesy to the LIFE Archives and to the photographer, Michael Rougier.