Wu Juping, a female worker in Hangzhou, was called the "most beautiful mother" by netizens for saving a 2-year-old girl from falling down 10 floors without thinking of her own safety.
In the hot afternoon on July 2, 2011, the 2-year-old girl, nicknamed Niu Niu, was sleeping at her home when her grandmother left her to fetch quilts that were airing out at the top of the building in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province. Before her granny could return, the toddler woke up and crawled to the window.
A neighbor who lives a floor below saw the girl and tried to reach her using a ladder, but the attempt failed and the girl went hurtling down.
Wu, a mother of a 7-month-old boy, saw the girl dangling from the window and raced to catch her, preventing the girl from hitting the ground at full force. Wu broke her left arm in the process.
Wu has been given various awards and was crowned "the most beautiful mother" by Chinese netizens ever since her story received extensive coverage by media. Her selfless act of generosity was a welcome departure from the slew of stories about people hesitating to help strangers in the hour of need, published in recent years.
A sculpture titled "mother's love", inspired by Wu's brave and selfless act, was erected near the residences of Wu and Niuniu. Wu has been invited to various workplaces to tell her story and inspire others.
Wu said she has gradually adjusted to a life that attracted people's attention, but did not think of herself as a heroine.
"All I did was simply out of a mother's instinct. If I have played a role that benefitted others, then what I did was worthwhile," she said.