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Two years ago, National Geographic Traveler contributing editor Carl Hoffman shared with me an idea for his next book. It struck a chord because when I was ten I was drawn to the subject: the mysterious disappearance in 1961 of Michael Rockefeller in what was then Netherlands New Guinea. Did he drown? Was he shredded by a crocodile or shark? Or, most grisly, was he eaten by cannibals?
A week before Thanksgiving Day in 1961, Michael Rockefeller, scion of one the most powerful families in U.S. history, decided to swim for shore after his boat capsized off the southwest coast of Dutch New Guinea.
He was never seen again.