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Extreme measures

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What extraordinary things will the human being do to survive? Join us as Professor Jason Moulenbelt weaves fantastic tales of perseverance and life affirmation. CAVEAT: Contains some graphic content. …

What extraordinary things will the human being do to survive? Join us as Professor Jason Moulenbelt weaves fantastic tales of perseverance and life affirmation. CAVEAT: Contains some graphic content. Viewer discretion is advised.
Lone Star College-CyFair, Houston, TX

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  • 1. Extreme Measures
    What would you do to stay alive?
    Presented by: Jason Moulenbelt
  • 2. Who Survives and Why?
    Extreme Measures:
  • 3. Deep Survival: How the Survivors Survive.
    1) Perceive, Believe:
    Understand the gravity of your situation and work through the acceptance cycle quickly to believe that you will live.
    2) Stay Calm:
    Use humor to stay calm and use fear to focus.
    3) Think, Analyze, Plan:
    Set up small tasks and routines in order to institute discipline.
    4) Take Correct, Decisive action.:
    Small tasks and do them properly, deal minute to minute and leave the rest behind.
    5) Celebrate your Successes:
    Imperative for motivation.
  • 4. How the Survivors Survive cont.
    6) Count your blessings:
    Be grateful you are alive and stay alive for a larger purpose.
    7) Play:
    Do anything to keep the mind busy. The more developed it is, the more resources you will have.
    8) See the Beauty:
    Seeing beauty allows your pupils to dilate and relives stress and creates motivation.
    9) Believe that you will succeed:
    Consolidate you personality and fix your determination.
  • 5. How the Survivors Survive cont.
    10) Surrender:
    Let go of your fear of dying and put away the pain.
    11) Do whatever is necessary:
    Be coldly rational about your skills and know that no one is going to save you.
    12) Never give up:
    Let nothing break your spirit.
  • 6. The Donner Party
    Extreme Measures:
  • 7. The Donner / Reed Party
    Spring of 1846 nearly 500 wagons headed west from Independence.
    Headed for California.
    A group of nine wagons containing 32 members of the Reed and Donner families and their employees left on May 12.
    87 members total.
    Encouraged by Lansfords Hastings (self promoter and book publisher) to take his ‘cut off’ to get to California faster.
  • 8. Part of the Path Taken by the Donner Reed Party.
  • 9. The Hastings Cutoff.
    Hasting not only did not have a clue if one could use his ‘cut off’ or if a wagon could traverse the Sierra Mountains.
    In fact, his short cut added 150 miles to the route and sealed the fate of the Donner Party.
  • 10. Wasatch Mountain and The Great Salt Lake.
    The Wasatch mountains were not passable by wagon until greatly improved by the work of axe and saw by the Donner Party.
    Much time was lost.
    The desert south of the Great Salt Lake needed then to be crossed.
    Hastings told them it would take two days.
    Five days later many oxen had escaped and many of the wagons had been abandoned.
    Reeds cutoff had cost them many supplies and a month in time.
  • 11. Reed Banished.
    After getting back on the established trail James Reed’s wagon became tangled with John Snyder’s wagon. A scuffle ensued where Reed killed Snyder.
    After some discussion it was decided that Reed would be banished from the wagon train as punishment.
    Reed rode ahead and crossed the Seirra Nevada’s well before the party proper.
  • 12. More Bad Luck.
    The group became more stretched out, three members had died on the trail (two from natural causes) and the wagon train became very stretched out.
    This allowed Paiute Indians to steal or kill many oxen (at this point the party had lost over 100) and a few wagons had to be abandoned.
    By the time they got to the crossing of the Sierra Nevada’s it was late October.
    However, it was not normal for the pass at the mountains to get snow until November.
  • 13. Freemont Pass and Truckee Lake.
    The party was one day late.
    The pass snowed shut the day prior.
    George Donner (and his wife Elizabeth) were behind the wagon train as it was due to damage to their wagon and a cut to Mr. Donner’s hand.
  • 14. Lake Truckee.
  • 15. Winter at the Lake.
    Very low on food and horribly unprepared for the winter the Donner Party attempted to build shelter for the winter.
    The winter that year received the most snow ever recorded in the mountains.
    James Reed had made it (barely) to Sutter’s Fort and tried to get a rescue party together as winter approached.
    All of the soldiers were off fighting the Mexican American War, Reed could not muster a party.
    Reed went with just two others and got within 12 miles of the Truckee Lake – but was forced to turn back.
  • 16. The situation at Truckee Lake.
    The lake had trout – but the party did not know how to fish for trout.
    One hunter in the party killed a bear, but had no luck after that.
    The roughly made cabins had dirt floors, holes in the roofs, and rough cut openings for doors.
    Due to the snow the Oxen started to die of starvation – they were eaten and their hides saved.
    A snow storm, lasting nearly a week, killed the rest of their horses and Oxen, and covered them so badly that they became lost.
  • 17. “The Forlorn Hope.”
    As people began to starve (one had died of malnutrition) a party of 17 men women and children decided to try and make an escape.
    After three days a member had died and the majority of the party was snow blind and after two more days Patrick Dolan suggested to the party that someone should simply choose to die to feed the rest.
    Lots were drawn but the idea was abandoned.
    Within another day Dolan and two others were dead.
    That night, because the children were starving, the began to cook and eat the dead.
    They also shot and ate the dying pair of Indian Guides that came back to lead them out.
    33 days after leaving only two of the men and five women who started the trek out – made it safety.
  • 18. Rescue is attempted.
    As men came back from fighting the Mexican American war two rescue parties were raised.
    The second lead by James Reed.
    At Lake Truckee 12 died before the first party arrived.
    The first party arrived and attempted to take out 23 people out.
    Two children died in the mountains.
    Mrs. Donner was forced to leave some of her children behind.
    This party made it out without succumbing to cannibalism, but one child fatally gorged himself when he arrived safely.
  • 19. Second Rescue.
    James Reed arrived with experienced mountaineers and hundreds of dollars in supplies.
    When the second party reached the lake no one new had died, but many families were surviving on the dead, including members of the Donner Family, who were keeping children alive by being fed their own father.
    The second party attempted escape with 17 members – three party members stayed behind (two of the men swindled a Donner member before leaving).
    A Donner child died on the way over.
    The rest were taken, under odd circumstances, to safety.
  • 20. A third party and a ‘salvage’.
    ‘Forlorn Hope’ members , William Foster and William Eddy, arrived two weeks later to find that their children (left behind) were dead and eaten by Lewis Keseberg.
    Five of the healthiest were taken out.
    A month later after two more failed attempts a salvage party went to retrieve Donner belongings, to sell to support the newly orphaned children.
    They found Lewis Keseberg alive, with many of the possessions of George and Tamsen Donner with many of the remains of the dead eaten entirley.
  • 21. Lewis Keseberg and William Eddy
  • 22. Uruguayan Flight 571
    Extreme Measures:
  • 23. Uruguayan Air Force Flight 571
    A plane with 45 members of the ‘Old Christians’ rugby team (and crew) crash in the Andes, where the survivors spent over two months.
    Dead reckoning was dead wrong.
    Of the 45 that crashed 17 died in the initial accident or by the following morning.
    Within 8 days the search, involving 3 countries, was called off due not being able to see a white plane on a glacier.
    The crash victims had a radio and heard when the search was called off.
  • 24. Flight Plan and Crash Site.
  • 25. The Crash Site.
  • 26. The situation.
    There was little left of the plane (the nose was destroyed and the tail was left hundreds of yards up the mountain from the crash) and thus little supplies were left.
    A few chocolate bars and several bottles of wine.
    Many survivors had injuries from the crash and soon the healthy were going snow blind.
    Water was not the problem, the sun melted it and it could be contained in the empty wine bottles, food, however was exceedingly scarce.
  • 27. The Rugby Team.
  • 28. Avalanche and attempted escapes.
    8 more survivors were buried and killed by an avalanche 17 days after the crash.
    The avalanche buried all hopes of being seen from the air and the survivors decided to look around for a way off the glacier.
    However, altitude sickness, dehydration, starvation, poor information, and malnourishment accounted for little distance being able to be covered on any one excursion.
  • 29. Tough Decisions.
    It was quickly realized that the food would run out before any attempt of getting off the mountain could be taken in earnest.
    It was decided after much discussion to eat the dead.
    Many of the survivors, being Roman Catholic, associated this type of eating as being akin to Holy Communion.
    A party was designated to try to get off the mountain, and this party was given extra rations, refrained from work detail, and rested for the attempt.
    Seven weeks went by as the party waited for Spring.
  • 30. A first expedition.
    A first expedition went east and found the tail section. Here they found suitcases, clothes, and comic books.
    They stayed for two nights but nearly froze to death on the second night so they returned to the main group towing all the supplies they could carry.
    It was decided that the following day a return to the tail would be made to scavenge the batteries there and try to make the radio in the nose work.
    This was done and many days were spent trying to make the radio work. However, the batteries were D/C and the radio worked off A/C.
  • 31. A Second Expedition.
    It was obvious from the first two excursions that escape would only happen to the west (up and around a spine in the glacier).
    However, the party needed to figure out how to survive the nights.
    Quilted bats were scavenged from the tail section and sewn into a sleeping bag for the escaping party.
    Another survivor died from his injuries and it was decided that escape was urgent.
  • 32. The Third and Final Expedition.
    NandoParrado, Roberto Cannessa, and Antonio Vizintin’ hiked three days to the closest mountain to the west and saw the mountain range that they were on (the border between Chile’ and Argentina) was much wider than imagined.
    They sent back Vizintin’ realizing that the hike was going to be much more involved and that they needed to ration their supplies more closely.
  • 33. Before Leaving.
  • 34. The Hike out.
    The two hikers, Parrado and Cannessa, hiked for several more days, out a finger in the glacier and to the Rio Azufre.
    That night they saw three peasants on horseback on the other side of the river and Parrado scribbled a not on paper, tied it to a rock, and tossed it over.
    The peasant understood and yelled back ‘Tomorrow!’
    A day later they were rescued, Parrado being healthy enough to lead the helicopters back to the crash. ‘
    The rescue took two days due to bad weather.
  • 35. The note.
  • 36. Leaving to go back and get the rest.
  • 37. Rescue!
  • 38. The Survivors in 2005
  • 39. Crash Site, Spine to the West.

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