Photo Credit: @HumCoSO/Twitter
Two young sisters were found alive in the woods after a harrowing weekend-long search in Southern Humboldt County. 5-year-old Caroline and 8-year-old Leia Carrico went missing around 2:30 p.m. on Friday, March 1st.
More than 250 state personnel assisted in search operations, including the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services, California National Guard, helicopters, and tracking dogs. Community members who wanted to help were asked to steer clear of the search area.
44 hours after they went missing, the girls were found approximately 1.4 miles away from their home in the rural northern California town of Benbow. On the morning of Sunday, March 3rd, the Piercy Volunteer Fire Department found granola bar wrappers and little boot prints that led them to the girls.
Miraculously, Caroline and Leia were found alive and unharmed, huddled together under a bush. The girls told first responders they were following a deer trail when they suddenly became lost. At that point, they decided to stay put until they could find help.
Luckily, they had outdoor survival training thanks to their local 4-H club. The girls survived their two days in the wilderness by drinking fresh water from huckleberry leaves. Despite being dehydrated and cold, the girls were in good spirits and were given warm clothes, food, and water when they were found.
The entire community and the Humboldt County Sheriff Department were relieved to learn the girls were safe, but no one could have been more grateful than the girls’ parents. At the very least, Caroline and Leia might now have an epic survival story to tell one day.