SURVIVE! My Fight for Life in the High Sierras

Peter DeLeo, Author
Peter DeLeo, Author . Simon & Schuster $24 (256p) ISBN 978-0-7432-7006-9
Ebook - 256 pages - 978-0-7432-7656-6
Paperback - 256 pages - 978-0-7432-7024-3
Paperback - 256 pages - 978-1-86105-902-4
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In November 1994, DeLeo and two friends set out on a sightseeing trip in the Sierra Nevadas in a single-engine plane. This is the story of DeLeo's survival after the aircraft, which he was piloting, crashed into a snowy ravine. Writing in the present tense, DeLeo explains how he fought to control the plane in the face of a sudden wind shear with terrifying and stunning effect. Following the crash, DeLeo and his companions were, of course, severely injured: DeLeo himself broke ribs and a shoulder, and seriously injured one ankle. Since his companions were too hurt to travel, DeLeo trekked along through the unforgiving wilderness without water or food. DeLeo tells of his struggles through deep snow and a driving blizzard, and his meals of snow and insects, adding recollections of how he met his sightseeing companions. He salutes the Civil Air Patrol's rescue efforts, yet it wasn't the patrol that found DeLeo: after 50 miles and 13 days of enduring whiteouts, frostbite and encounters with bears, he reached a town and went back with the rescuers to discover his friends—whom he'd left at a campsite—dead. It's taken years for DeLeo to physically and emotionally recover, and he brings a knowing perspective to this account. It deserves its place in the canon of survival literature. Agent, James Fitzgerald. (Jan.)

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