A New York socialite celebrating her 26th wedding anniversary saw her husband and son die after a zebra leaped out in front of their SUV while on safari.

Sissi Bohlen was also in the Land Rover when the animal startled the driver, causing it to leave the road and flip over in northern Namibia on 17 January.

The crash killed Edgar Bohlen, 65, and his son, Vincent Bohlen, 25, who were in the middle row of seats. Sissi, who was sitting in the back, survived the accident.

The driver, who was not speeding, also survived the freak crash, and has not been charged over the incident.

Sissi was rushed to hospital and was treated for several days in intensive care for a punctured lung, broken ribs and an injury to her knee, according to 27 East.

She spent almost two weeks in a Namibian clinic before being passed fit enough to fly back to Austria, where she was born, to visit her remaining family on Monday (29 January).

The Bohlens had booked the trip last year for their 25th wedding anniversary, to coincide with their 26th anniversary, which fell on the day of the crash. Vincent was their only son.

Sissi met her husband at a party in New York City in 1991 and they married the following year.

Vincent, originally from Germany, was a successful real estate broker, as was their son who went into the industry after graduating from New York University's Stern School of Business in 2014.

The couple had lived in the US for more than 20 years, based for most of that time in the exclusive hamlet of Water Mill on Long Island.

Family friend Bettina Burda paid tribute to Edgar: "He was into sailing, golf, tennis. He loved cigars, and he loved, loved, loved his friends."

Sissi remembered her son, Vincent: "He was never arrogant or selfish — he was always giving. He was like that when we were kids, and as a teen in his awkward years. It's just something that was always present in him."