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Rescuers describe finding missing hiker in Trabuco Canyon

April 5, 2013 12:00:00 AM PDT
Rescuers are speaking out about finding missing hiker Kyndall Jack in the Cleveland National Forest, as new video and photographs are released.

The photos were snapped by a rescuer on the ground as 18-year-old Kyndall Jack was lifted to safety Thursday morning.

"She was very dirty, up on a small little ledge ... in the fetal position holding on," L.A. County Sheriff's Reserve Deputy Fred Wenzel said. "She asked me what year it was. She thought it was the year 2030. She was very confused."

She spent four days without food or water, wearing shorts, a shirt and no shoes.

"She was kind of clinging to a ledge on a cliff side, kind of going in and out of consciousness. She was hurt, having difficulty breathing, pain to both of her lower extremities," said rescuer Jim Moss.

Jack was rescued from Trabuco Canyon Trail after spending four nights in the forest. She's recovering at UC Irvine Medical Center. Officials say Jack was dehydrated and hypothermic, but on Friday, she was in good condition. Cendoya was rescued Wednesday night and taken to Mission Hospital. Officials say he is now eating normal food.

Nicolas Cendoya, 19, and Jack, 18, are both in stable condition, recuperating from dehydration.

Cendoya spoke out about the ordeal on his Facebook page and thanked everyone for their support.

"Hi everyone im okay now and im not in as much pain. I am so thankful god had Kyndall Kihapai Jack saved. It killed me she was out there still . I never knew how many friends i truly had thank you too all who didnt give up on Kyndall Kihapai Jack and i. To me this was a test from god i embraced everything. All the cuts pain hunger thirst. I didnt cry once i pushed on for jesus and i have finally learned to live without fear. Thank you all for keeping Kyndall Kihapai Jack and i in your prayers. We love you all and i. Cant wait to see her and give her a hug and tell her we did it," Cendoya posted.

Cendoya was discovered shirtless and shoeless Wednesday by a group of three volunteer searchers.

"Apparently, he thought he was in Newport Beach at one point, so he was just really out of it, but we kept telling him to just keep calm, and that people were on their way up and to stay where he was. We let him know that we loved him," said Cendoya's friend Amanda Phipps.

They flagged down Orange County firefighters who were not involved in the search but just happened to be nearby.

The teens will not be able to reunite right away. According to doctors, it will take a few days for them to regain full strength and leave the hospital. It is still unknown how the pair got separated on Easter and ended up off the trail.


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