Body Found of Man Who Survived 68 Days in Snow

Jerry McDonald was just three miles from highway, four miles from town
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted May 14, 2011 1:08 PM CDT
This photo released Friday, May 13, 2011 by the Linn County Sheriff Office shows a homemade calendar found in Jerry William McDonald 1997 GMC pickup.   (AP Photo/Linn County Sheriff Office)

(Newser) – A man was found dead in his pickup truck on an Oregon forest service road, after apparently being snowed in and surviving for 68 days. Jerry McDonald kept track of the days on a handmade calendar found in the truck, which notes that he arrived in the area Feb. 7 to camp and got snowed in on Feb. 14. His food may have run out on March 16, the Corvallis Gazette-Times reports, noting that he marked that day "No Fo1" and the next "No Fo2," etc. The last entry, April 15, simply says "rain" and is marked as day 68.

McDonald, 68, died of starvation and hypothermia, KPTV reports. His body was found in a sleeping bag; he also had cold weather clothing and chains on his tires but no GPS, cell phone, or compass. It appears he tried to get out by using a jack and rocks under his tires for traction, but there is no indication he tried to walk out of the area. He also built a fire, collected water in buckets, and had extra fuel for his truck. McDonald, described as transient, was estranged from his family and never reported missing.

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