ADVERTISEMENTLt. Leon Crane’s ordeal began 25,000 feet above that lonely stretch of the Yukon on December 21, 1943. Crane watched Pompeo’s parachute drift over a nearby ridge before he landed up to his waist in snow. After calling out to no response, Crane starting pushing through the snow making for the smoking crash site, some 1/4 mile away. Crane managed to start a fire next to the frozen river using a letter from his father warmed in his breast pocket. Crane survived over 80 days in the Alaskan wilderness, with no training, no experience in the Arctic, and no survival skills.