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A pilot was taking his family in a light seaplane into British Columbia. When he attempted to land offshore in the ocean, the plane’s pontoons caught and flipped the plane into the icy waters. The pilot and his family managed to get out of the plane, but it quickly sank, and they had to swim a half mile to a small island. They were injured from the crash, and had to survive three cold days before being found. Another plane saw them, quite by accident, as it was flying over. An official search was initiated at the time of the accident because of the distress signal, but the searchers arrived at the scene just as the airplane was sinking and assumed no one survived. The man in charge of the rescue called off the search almost immediately. When the family was eventually brought back safely, the official in charge of rescuing people defended his decision to call off the search, by saying: “They (the people whose plane crashed) did all the wrong things; they left the scene of the accident and left no indication which way they had gone.” Here was a man who could follow rules, but who could not follow the leading of his heart. Technically, he had followed the rules and done things correctly (since he had read in a manual that you should never leave the scene of an accident, and if you did, you should somehow indicate where you have gone), but no one in their right mind would believe he did the right thing.

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