J. Roy Tipton, 53, mine watchman, attempted to save George E. Martin, 39, truck driver, from exposure on a glacier, Valdez, Alaska, January 10, 1935. While Martin, Tipton, and two other men were on their way from a mine to Valdez, they were overtaken by a severe blizzard on Valdez Glacier; and they traveled in the wrong direction. The surface of the glacier had many ridges, crevasses, and pinnacles. The temperature was 40 degrees below zero. They spent a night in the lee of a boulder without fire, food, or water and then continued traveling until about noon when the sun appeared and they discovered their location and returned to the boulder where they spent another night. At seven in the morning they again started, but about noon Martin became weak. Tipton stopped at times to help Martin, and their companions got out of their sight and later found shelter in a cabin. In the afternoon Tipton and Martin reached a crevasse 25 feet deep that extended across the glacier a mile from the lower end of the glacier; and Tipton was unable to persuade Martin, who was frightened, to cross it. Tipton descended the crevasse part way and made a small cave in the snow. Putting gloves and mittens from his pack on Martin to replace Martin’s, which were wet, he helped Martin to the cave; and Martin lay down from exhaustion. Tipton aroused him with difficulty and remained with him during the night, continuing to arouse him at intervals and rubbing his legs and arms. The next morning Tipton told him to keep moving and that he would go for help. Tipton, although feeling his own hands and feet were freezing, put his parka and mittens on Martin, stuck his snow-shoes on end in the snow to mark the place, and started toward Valdez. Through unbroken snow three feet deep he made his way for five miles, reaching Valdez in the afternoon. He was weak, and his hands and feet were frozen. A little later men went to Martin and carried him toward Valdez, but he died on the way. Tipton was confined in a hospital three months. The fingers of his right hand are stiff; and parts of his feet were amputated, permanently crippling him somewhat.
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