Missing young California sisters found after spending 44 hours in the forest

Minnie Murray
March 5, 2019

Two young siblings whose disappearance sparked a massive search in Northern California were found safe Sunday after missing for 44 hours, authorities said.

Leia Carrico, 8, left, and her sister Caroline Carrico, 5, survived two days in rugged bushland thanks to survival training from their local youth community group.

Leia and Caroline Carrico, 8 and 5, were last seen Friday afternoon by their home in the northern community of Benbow before they wandered away, The Associated Press reported.

The county sheriff is calling it an "absolute miracle". She told them no. "These girls definitely have a survival story to tell".

They were found "in good spirits, not injured" and were provided with fresh warm clothes and water.

On Sunday, the Humboldt County Sheriff's Office announced that the girls had been found safely after spending more than 48 hours in the woods.

"I have to tell you that when we go the first word that the kids may be safe, there was still a question mark in a lot of people's minds", Fennell said.

He said the girls were examined by paramedics and the initial assessment showed they were dehydrated and cold. "To have a positive outcome like this is just absolutely wonderful..."

Teams from Mendocino County, Napa County, Del Norte County, State Parks, National Guard, the U.S. Coast Guard, the Southern Humboldt Technical Rescue, CAL FIRE, the Sheriff's Search and Rescue Posse were involved with the Humboldt County Sheriff's Office in the search efforts.

At 6:00 p.m. on Friday, March 1, HCSO reports they received a call from the mother asking for assistance to find the girls.

Rescuers were hopeful about finding the girls Saturday after they came across prints from their boots and wrappers from granola bars, Lieutenant Mike Fridley said.

"She melted on the phone", he said.

"We found some granola bar wrappers, and we confirmed with the mum" that they were wrappers of granola bars she purchased", Fridley said.

"As the information comes in we react to it", Fridley said.

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