disabilities

Rescue teams near Los Angeles search for a lost teen.

A 16-year-old developmentally disabled teen went on a hike with his mother and sister in the mountains near Los Angeles on the morning of Sunday, April 3 when he ran off into the trees and disappeared. The family called the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s department for help, but after six hours they still couldn’t find him.

The situation was stressful because the teen is nonverbal and couldn’t call out for help or reveal his location. His family had no idea whether he was injured or how far he had gone into the forest.

The Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department brought together the Montrose Search and Rescue Team, Glendale and Burbank police, the Altadena Mountain Rescue Team and the Sierra Madre Search and Rescue Team to help in the search. They didn’t have much to go on but the boy's mother told Montrose Search and Rescue Deputy Steve Goldsworthy that he had an affection for rocks. “He will go out of his way to kick a rock, pick up a rock, throw a rock," Goldsworthy said.

“Several hours into the search, a Montrose team member heard what sounded like the clinking of rocks together,” the Montrose Search and Rescue Team wrote on Facebook. “Remembering that the missing person had an interest in playing with rocks, he investigated further. He also directed the Burbank PD airship to look down the canyon.”

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