Lost in Shangri-La: A True Story of Survival, Adventure, and by Mitchell Zuckoff PDF

By Mitchell Zuckoff

ISBN-10: 0061988340

ISBN-13: 9780061988349

On might thirteen, 1945, twenty-four American servicemen and WACs boarded a shipping airplane for a sightseeing journey over “Shangri-La,” a stunning and mysterious valley deep in the jungle-covered mountains of Dutch New Guinea. not like the peaceable Tibetan priests of James Hilton’s bestselling novel misplaced Horizon, this Shangri-La was once domestic to spear-carrying tribesmen, warriors rumored to be cannibals.

however the excitement journey grew to become an unforgettable conflict for survival whilst the aircraft crashed. Miraculously, 3 passengers pulled via. Margaret Hastings, barefoot and burned, had no selection yet to put on her lifeless top friend’s footwear. John McCollom, grieving the demise of his dual brother additionally aboard the aircraft, masked his grief with stoicism. Kenneth Decker, too, used to be critically burned and suffered a gaping head wound.

Emotionally devastated, badly injured, and liable to the hidden hazards of the jungle, the trio confronted yes dying until they left the crash website. stuck among man-eating headhunters and enemy jap, the wounded passengers persisted a harrowing hike down the mountainside—a trip into the unknown that may lead them immediately right into a primitive tribe of superstitious natives who had by no means prior to visible a white man—or woman.

Drawn from interviews, declassified U.S. military files, own images and mementos, a survivor’s diary, a rescuer’s magazine, and unique movie photos, misplaced in Shangri-La recounts this brilliant true-life event for the 1st time. Mitchell Zuckoff unearths how the made up our minds trio—dehydrated, in poor health, and in pain—traversed the dense jungle to discover support; how a courageous band of paratroopers risked their very own lives to save lots of the survivors; and the way a cowboy colonel tried a formerly untested rescue challenge to get them out.

by means of hiking into the hot Guinea jungle, vacationing distant villages, and rediscovering the crash web site, Zuckoff additionally captures the modern natives’ remembrances of the long-ago day while unknown creatures fell from the sky. A riveting paintings of narrative nonfiction that vividly brings to lifestyles an odyssey from time to time terrifying, enlightening, and comedian, misplaced in Shangri-La is a thrill journey from commencing to end.

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Extra resources for Lost in Shangri-La: A True Story of Survival, Adventure, and the Most Incredible Rescue Mission of World War II

Sample text

When Kampfgruppe Zabel entered the town on 22 July it showed no pity and executed them. Meanwhile, a smaller Kampfgruppe consisting mainly of Reserve Grenadier Bataillon 217 and a few minor detachments had come from the east over the Col de Grimone after some sporadic fighting and linked with Kampfgruppe Zabel east of Die. The encirclement of the Vercors plateau was now complete. Kampfgruppe Zabel had thus fulfilled its mission and reached its objectives faster than originally expected. This offered the Germans a tempting option: to launch an attack onto the plateau from the south.

Again the FFI was able to reach the first houses in the south-eastern corner of Vassieux, but the commander of ‘Justine’, Captain Hopper, decided to withdraw – prematurely as some critics would later claim with the benefit of hindsight. The main problem, however, was the direction of the attack; the French had stormed over the largely open ground to the south of the village. In addition, they had expected reinforcements from the north; but these forces had never shown up for reasons unknown. A few hours later Geyer reported the failed attack to Descour and Huet; he also had to convey the sad news that the Descour’s son Jacques had fallen in the battle.

Carried out in strict cooperation with the Allied landings in southern France it would indeed have created great opportunities. In reality, however, it lacked the manpower, the armament, the training and above all the necessary support from the Allies to succeed. Yet the commanding officers on the plateau, especially Huet, stuck to a plan whose basic requirements just did not exist and tried to fight a pitched battle. The French plan for the Tarentaise contained the same recipe for disaster as that in the Vercors; after liberating a particular area, the FFI hoped to hold the ground or at least to delay considerably any enemy advance until Allied reinforcements arrived.

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Lost in Shangri-La: A True Story of Survival, Adventure, and the Most Incredible Rescue Mission of World War II by Mitchell Zuckoff


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