The Old Christians Rugby Club along with friends and family were traveling to a match in Chile when their plane crashed in the Andes Mountains on this day in rugby history in 1972. The survivors were not rescued until December 22. The ordeal was recounted in the book Alive.
Uruguayan Air Force Flight 571 took off with 45 passengers. The crash killed more than a quarter of the passengers and several others died shortly after the crash. The 29 survivors, 8 who were eventually killed in an avalanche, set up camp to wait for their rescue but unknown to them after eight days it was called off.
--- Get a new pair of rugby boots at the World Rugby Shop. Get in the Game! ---
When it became evident they were on their own, rugby playing passengers Nando Parrado and Roberto Canessa decided to walk for help on December 12. They eventually found civilization and Chilean arriero Sergio Catalán who notified authorities.
1970 – Rob Howley, Welsh rugby player