The hero who helped free the alligator handler from the reptile's jaws says he knew he needed to jump in the tank and save her ... and her mom says it's divine intervention.
Donnie Wiseman, the hero from the scary incident at Scales and Tails Utah, tells TMZ ... he felt even better about jumping in the tank to wrestle the gator after getting an emotional message from Lindsay Bull's mother.
He says she told him it was a godsend for him to be on Lindsay's tour, because he was the only one there who was willing to sacrifice his life to save her. Donnie says he cried when he got the message and it made everything worthwhile.
As we reported ... the alligator attacked Lindsay in front of a tour full of paying customers, and Donnie rushed in to save her ... putting his life on the line.
Donnie says he knew it was now or never after seeing the terrified look on Lindsay's face ... and while he's got lots of experience with reptiles, he had never dealt with an alligator before.