Her earlier calls unanswered, the unidentified woman went to Montrose Harbor Wednesday, where she used a power boat to search for her husband and sailboat companions, the Chicago Tribune reported Wednesday.
Fire Department spokesman Larry Langford said the woman tried calling her husband to alert him severe weather was rolling in.
The woman eventually found the capsized sailboat and the three men bobbing in the lake, and pulled them aboard her boat, officials said. The woman called 911 after she had rescued them.
Two of the three men were taken to the hospital, the Tribune said.
Langford said the men owe their lives to the woman and her instincts. Authorities estimated the men were in the cold water 30-45 minutes. The water temperature was between the upper 30s and lower 40s, the National Weather Service said.
"If the wife hadn't gone after them ... they would probably be dead by now because nobody would have gone looking for them," Langford said.