Miracle in the Andes

A Story of Extreme Survival

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The Story

Miracle in the Andes was a chartered flight carrying a rugby team, their friends, family and associates, that crashed in the Andes on 13 October 1972. More than a quarter of the passengers died in the crash and several others quickly succumbed to cold and injury. Of the 27 who were alive a few days after the accident, another eight were killed by an avalanche that swept over their shelter in the wreckage. The last 16 survivors were rescued on 23 December 1972, more than two months after the crash.

The survivors had little food and no source of heat in the harsh conditions. Faced with starvation and radio news reports that the search for them had been abandoned, the survivors fed on the dead passengers who had been preserved in the snow. Rescuers did not learn of the survivors until 72 days after the crash when passengers Nando and Roberto after a 10-day trek across the Andes, found civilization and then alerted the authorities to the existence of the other survivors

The Reaction

When first rescued, the survivors initially explained that they had eaten airline food they had carried with them, planning to discuss the details in private with their families. They were pushed into the public eye when photos were leaked to the press and sensational, unauthorized articles were published.

The rescuers and a Chilean priest later returned to the crash site and buried the bodies of the deceased. Close to the grave a stone pile with an iron cross was built. The remains of the fuselage were doused in gasoline and set on fire.

To this day the public still has mixed feelings about the events that happened in the mountains. Some say it was an act of instinct and survival, others say it was barbaric.

Interview with Nando Parrado

Nando explains how the accounts in the mountains shaped him into the sucessful man he is today

Major Motion Picture "Alive" Based off of the book.

The amazing, true story of a Uruguayan rugby team's plane that crashed in the middle of the Andes mountains, and their immense will to survive and pull through alive, forced to do anything and everything they could to stay alive on meager rations and through the freezing cold. The only thing the team has riding on after losing so many of their good friends and family members is the slim chance of making it through alive and their faithfulness to God.