Can unconscious characters be willing? [duplicate]

This situation came up last week during our session. The party was facing a pretty difficult mob of enemies and one of the party members was knocked unconscious. Seeing the situation worsening, one of the players decided to use the Rod of Security (DMG p. 197). In the text, it says:

The rod then instantly transports you and up to 199 other willing creatures you can see to a paradise that exists in an extraplanar space.

At first glance I thought this was actually a pretty good time to use the rod. The question came up though, what about the party member who is unconscious? In the end I made the call that the character went with them to keep things moving and more fun.

However, I’m feeling like back pedaling a bit and notifying my players that for future uses, the line “… willing creatures…” will be more strictly enforced as I don’t feel like an unconscious creature could be willing.

Did I handle this the right way?