An alert reader sent me this clip from the article:
Sounds like Michael is a Hatchet (by Gary Paulsen) fan.
One of Michael's favorite books a few years ago was about a boy whose plane crashes in the wilderness, and how that boy survives on his own, his father said.
"I think he's got some of that book in his mind," Auberry said. "In my fantasy, when they find him, he'll be making beef jerky somewhere or something like that. He's got a lot of resources to draw from."