Fatigue sets in
Back in Fort Washington, Allison began to wonder why Lanny and Mary had not returned. She knew Lanny did not fly in the dark; the plane had no landing lights. Allison tried to get through to the Federal Aviation Administration.
“The FAA told us to call Lockheed [Martin, which tracks flight plans]. … Lockheed told me at that time that they had lost contact with him and that they’d contacted search-and-rescue. That’s when it really hit me,” Allison said.
Lanny had left his mother behind, to float away in the waves. He described the decision to leave her battered body as “cold and calculating.” But he reasoned that his mother would have wanted Lanny to save himself, not worry about her lifeless body.
As the sun went down, Lanny’s back hurt and he was shivering, but he continued to push through the waves. By 6 p.m., he reached a narrow sandbar where he could touch bottom. His spirits lifted and he continued to move toward land.