José “Coche” Luis Inciarte: How Did Andes Plane Crash Survivor Die?

Netflix’s ‘Society of the Snow,’ AKA ‘La Sociedad de la Nieve,’ is a beloved movie based on the real-life story of the survivors of the 1972 plane crash in the Andes. The tragedy soon became a testament to human resilience. Among the 16 survivors who were able to return home was José “Coche” Luis Inciarte, a man whose life story became an inspiration to many, leaving the world curious about the latest update in his life.

Who is José “Coche” Luis Inciarte?

Born on April 24, 1948, José “Coche” Luis Inciarte was one of the 45 people who boarded Flight 571 from Montevideo, Uruguay, to Santiago, Chile, on October 12, 1972. At the time, he was a student of Agricultural Engineering but was not affiliated with the Old Christians Club rugby union team. In fact, his presence on the plane came about after some of his friends encouraged him to board and join them in order to travel to a foreign country.

Coche’s friend Gastón Costemalle passed away during the accident, though he himself remained unharmed during the initial impact. However, as days passed by and the conditions worsened, Coche did start to struggle. His reluctance to consume the flesh of the deceased was undoubtedly high, but he ultimately partook in the same, knowing that this might be the only way out. However, during the avalanche of October 29, 1972, Coche’s foot became seriously injured.

Given the lack of available resources, Coche’s leg was operated on using available blades, though that led to a major infection, which rendered him unable to walk. Not wanting to bring the spirits down, he tried to keep his complaints to the minimum. However, as the end of December 1972 approached, Coche started to lose hope, apparently feeling like December 24 of the year would be his last. Fortunately for all involved, Nando Perrado and Roberto Canessa’s efforts bore fruit, and Coche was taken away from the Andes on December 22, 1972.

Where Happened to José “Coche” Luis Inciarte?

After Coche Inciarte was rescued from the Andes, he chose not to be very public about his own perspective of the aftermath of the crash. That is not to say that he has never opened up about the same. In fact, the dairyman ended up publishing a book of his own called ‘Memories of the Andes.’ It was published on December 7, 2020, with John Guiver as the translator and Katharine Smith as the editor. The perspective provided by Coche is certainly valuable, especially given the hardships he faced in the Andes. He also offered his words for the 2005 edition of ‘Alive: The Story of the Andes Survivors.’

Tragically, on July 27, 2023, Coche passed away due to cancer. This made him the second among the 16 survivors to pass away, given the passing of Javier Methol on June 4, 2015. In life, he was happily married to his beloved Soledad, and the two became parents of three children. The latter years of Coche’s life saw him concentrating on his passion for painting. His loss was not only felt keenly by his family but also by those who created an unbreakable bond with him during their harrowing time in the Andes.

Read More: Where is Alfredo “Pancho” Delgado Now?

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