The Raft by Robert TrumbullThree naval airmen from a downed plane spend over a month in an open raft upon the South Pacific Seas with no food, water or cover from the sun and live to tell the tale. Wow. I need to stop bitching when I get a little sunburn or miss lunch.
This memoir was put together by Robert Trumbull in 1942 soon after Harold Dixon, Gene Aldrich, and Tony Pastula underwent their trying ordeal. Its told from Dixons perspective. He was the pilot and senior to the other two. He gives his opinions relatively freely. His descriptions of their journey are novel-worthy, making for one heck of a nail-biting read.
Some of the details, like what they were doing and where it took place, had to be left sketchy because the war was still ongoing. But that doesnt detract from the essence of their story. Ive read a few sea survival biographies and this ranks right up there with its storms, sharks, deprivation, hope and despair. Heck, this even includes an encounter with natives, like it was some kind of fanciful 18th century adventure tall tale. At times I felt like I was reading of Captain Blighs post-mutiny survival voyage or a better version of Robinson Crusoe.
If reading The Raft doesnt sound like your thing, perhaps you might watch it? It was recently made into a movie, Against the Sun, starring Malfoy...
Moffat County man recalls World War II Pacific survivors
News December 6, On the morning of Dec. Soon after the attack, the United States officially entered World War II, setting into motion a war effort that saw more than 10 percent of Americans enlisted in the military. Among them were pilot Harold F. To escape the sinking plane, Dixon, Pastula and Aldrich deployed a small rubber life raft, where the three men spent the next 34 days adrift at sea, with limited tools, the clothes on their backs and what they carried in their pockets.
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Aircraft History Built by Douglas. Delivered to the U. No known nickname or nose art. Unable to return to the carrier, this Devastator ditched into the eastern Central Pacific out of fuel. Fates of the Crew The three crew survived the ditching unhurt and successfully deployed the Devastator's life raft. For the next thirty-four days, the three crew survived in the open sea, traveling over miles before reaching land at Puka Puka Island and were rescued.