A four year-old girl and her grandparents have been found safe and well two days after vanishing after traveling to a forest to find a Christmas tree. Zelda Sudhoff-Clements and her grandparents Sharon and Gregory Poitra were rescued in Willamette National Forest in Oregon on Wednesday after being spotted by search teams.
The family’s Toyota Matrix had gotten trapped between downed trees and snow, leaving them stranded amid the vast 1.2million acre forest. Gregory, 63, and Sharon, 61, had a blanket, water, a tarp and snacks to keep themselves and Zelda warm and fed until help arrived, and were found unharmed.
A cute photo shared by Lane County Sheriff’s Office afterwards showed a cheerful-looking Zelda being reunited with her relieved mother.
Rescuers used Sharon and Gregory’s mobile phones to help narrow down the search area, with a US Coast Guard helicopter drafted in to help with the hunt ultimately spotting the family.
They set off from their home in Eugene, Oregon, to find a Christmas tree to cut down on Monday. Zelda’s mother raised the alarm after going to collect her daughter on Tuesday, and realizing her loved-ones hadn’t returned from their trip.
Terrain in the search area was so rough officials discouraged well-wishers from joining in the search, and instead asked them to contact them with any possible sightings.
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