During World War II, Lim was second steward on a British merchant ship that took off from Cape Town in South Africa. When the slow-moving boat was torpedoed by a Nazi U-boat some 700 miles east of the Amazon, Poon jumped ship before the boat sunk. For the next 133 days, Poon survived on an 8-foot by 8-foot life raft. In that time, Poon found ways to catch sharks using leftover hemp rope and nails from his life raft. He was eventually successful, drinking a shark's blood for hydration and eating its fins for sustenance. Poon was almost rescued once by Navy patrol planes, but a storm hit right as they were going to get him to safety. Finally, a group of Brazilian fisherman rescued Poon and got him back to land. His ordeal remains the longest ever involving a human lost at sea on a life raft.