March 3, 2009
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It was a dark scary night, the wolves were howling and the moon was full. My plane, a Cessna 172, had crashed and the pilot was dead. I was all alone.

When I realized that the pilot was having a heart attack, I panicked and tried to radio the airport to ask for help. Then the plane must have run out of gas because it sputtered and all of a sudden the plane was going down steadily. There were so many buttons and gauges and alarms going off, I turned to the pilot to see him lying on the floor, his eyes were rolled back and I couldn't tell if he was breathing or not. I ran to the supply closet and got all the pillows and blankets. I braced myself with the pillows and pulled them hard to my body. When the plane crashed I had hit the chair in front of me and was knocked out. I know the plane had hit the water but when I came to, the plane was on the shore of a small island. It was somewhat light out because the moon was full. I could see land in the distance. 'I must be on some sort of a lake,' I thought. I was still wrapped in a blanket with pillows all around me but I was laying sideways in the sand still attached to my seat! I could hear wolves howling and I passed out again. The next thing I knew it was daylight, I must have been passed out for a long time. I stood up and looked around. I said to myself, 'Calm down, you know what to do.'

When I saw the pilot's leg appear on the shore I almost puked. 'Pull it together!' I said out loud. I started towards the plane to see what I could find. Luckily the plane had a emergency kit. There were band aids, antibiotic ointment, a sewing kit, scissors, ammonia inhalants and a black bag. I tore open the black bag and there were two of the most important things I could have found! Flint and a compass! I continued to look through the drawers and cabinets and I found more blankets and a fishing pole set! The tackle box had lots of string and a knife! I was about to give up searching the plane when I saw a box sitting under a seat. When I opened it I was so excited I jumped up and down and screamed 'Wahoo!!' It was full of MRE's! As I left the plane I grabbed the emergency hatchet and a waterproof flashlight that were in a box attached to the wall of the plane. With all of these supplies, I would not starve to death and I might even be able to make a shelter.

The sun was pretty high so I thought I would get things done before it got dark. I went into the woods and cut down some trees. I constructed a base for a shelter with the string and the hatchet. I then used some of the pieces of the plane that were scattered across the beach for the walls and ceiling of the shelter. The sun was starting to set as I finished my shelter. I used the left over wood and branches to build a fire. I never realized how hard it was to make a fire with a flint! It took me several tries but when I finally got the fire going I said, 'Yeah fire, fire' like Beavis and Butthead from that show my mom and dad would never let me watch. I thought about how nice it would be to be sitting at home watching T.V. I gathered all of the blankets and pillows and put them in my shelter. The sun had set but the moon was still big and bright so I decided to try to fish. I am glad I did too! I caught two HUGE bass! I cleaned them and cooked them over my fire. I made two of the MRE's and used one of the seat trays as a plate. After I ate, I hung all of my leftover food and fish scraps in a tree away from my shelter. I went and layed in my shelter, I could hear something moving around in the darkness. I peeked around trying to see what was making the noise. I called out, 'Hello?' of course no one answered. And then a gigantic bear walked by my shelter. I tried hard not to scream. I covered my head with the blankets. The noises stopped and eventually fell asleep.

Days went by, I continued to gather wood and I attempted to make a raft. I thought if I could get to the land on the other side of the lake, I might be able to get myself rescued. My attempts at a raft failed. I thought maybe I would get enough wood to make a huge fire and then put a lot of leaves on top to make a huge smoke signal. I gathered leaves and I made an SOS sign with the wood on the beach. I lit the fire. It was big and very hot. As I added leaves the smoke got darker and darker. I was hoping that someone, somewhere was looking for me. I knew that my parents would be worried. I couldn't wait for someone to find me. I kept putting leaves on the fire. The smoke was filling the sky, it was very thick and now was completely black. It looked like the whole island was on fire, the smoke started to block off the sunlight. Someone had to see the smoke! It had to be early evening, because the sun was starting to get low. Even through all of the smoke I could still make out where the sun was. I made another MRE and thought 'this is the stuff our troops eat' as I choked it down. I would have given anything to have a Big Mac. Then I started thinking of all the yummy things I wanted to eat when I get home. It was getting dark. I wasn't sure if anyone would rescue me. I kept putting leaves on the fire though. In the distance I could see a bright light. 'What is that?!' It got closer and I could hear the sound of a helicopter! I started jumping up and down screaming 'I'm here, I'm here!' The helicopter landed on the beach, and my parents came running toward me! We hugged for what seemed like forever. When we got in the helicopter I asked if we could stop at McDonald's on the way home, my parents were so excited to see me they said we could buy a McDonald's if I wanted one!

Being stranded on an island really gave me time to think about how much I loved my family. I wouldn't have been able to fish if my dad hadn't taught me how. I wouldn't have been able to cook the fish, if I hadn't watched my mom. I wouldn't have known how to build a shelter, if I wouldn't have gone camping with my uncle. I wouldn't have known how to cut down trees, if my grandpa wouldn't have made me help cut trees in the winters. Even though I was alone on that island, they were all there helping me. I'm glad I was rescued.

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