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Franz finds himself very sad and lonely once McCandless leaves him, having become very attached to him. He gets a long letter from McCandless soon after, encouraging him to get out on the road and live like he does, and Franz takes this advice. Franz waits for McCandless’s return, but one day when he picks up two hitchhikers and tells them about his friend “Alex,” they tell him that they just read an article in Outside magazine about it, and he’s dead. In response, Franz renounces God, and buys his first bottle of whiskey in a long time. Many people were critical of Chris because of the callous way he treated his own family. Chris only sent his sister one post card with no return address yet he writes a long letter to a man he met while hitch hiking.