CA: Hunter found after night in woods
October 26, 2010
Hunter found after night in woods
Jay Sarina calls out friends and finds his father
A 71-year-old man survived a stormy night in the woods near Big Flat
before being rescued Monday morning.
The last day of hunting season had drawn Bob Sarina and Kenny Wells, also
71, out to try to bag a deer Sunday.
The local men got separated early Sunday afternoon, and Sarina wasn't
found until around 9:30 a.m. Monday. A Coast Guard helicopter airlifted him
out of the woods at 11:45 a.m.
He is the father of Jay Sarina, Del Norte County's chief administrative
If it wasn't for his son and a few friends of his, Bob Sarina might have
died, according to Del Norte County Sheriff's Commander Bill?Steven.
Jay Sarina credited friends he had called at 4 a.m. Monday for finding
"The guys that came in, they put out a hell of an effort, they went out
there and risked their lives too," he said.
Sarina said his father was still at Sutter Coast Hospital at 5 p.m.
Monday, being treated for hypothermia and "getting pretty beat up from
walking all night and sleeping on the ground."
Bob Sarina "will be fine and should be coming home tonight," Jay Sarina
Bob Sarina and Well left Sunday morning on the hunting expedition.
At about 1 p.m., Sarina got out of the vehicle they were in near
Muzzleloader Creek, according to Steven.
Sarina planned to walk up toward the creek, then down Jones Creek along a
ridge, Steven said, adding the plan was for Wells to pick Sarina up at the
end of the road.
"He decided to hit the brush and follow the ridge," said Steven.
The men had two-way radios and were in contact with each other.
By 6 p.m., Sarina had gotten lost and Wells was attempting to get him
back to the road by radio, Sarina.
The weather worsened, with wind, thunder, lightning and heavy rain.
At 8 p.m., the two had lost contact after their batteries died.
"Just before the battery died, he said he was going to try and get to
Jones Creek, and then follow it up to the bridge," said Steven.
As it turned out, "he was a few miles from the bridge," said
Terry?McNamara, Del Norte Search and Rescue coordinator.
Steven said Wells was on the phone with authorities at 8 p.m. and said he
thought Search and Rescue wasn't needed, but Steven called the rescue
workers out anyway.
Because Sarina had his rifle with him, as did Wells, Steven said rescuers
fired off shots in hopes of hearing a return shot.
"We heard one, but it was way too far off," said Steven.
"We had some good signs with some of the shots fired, we knew he was able
to hear us and fire off a few rounds," said Jay Sarina.
Steven said Search and Rescue workers suspended their search due to the
inclement weather, with plans to resume at daylight.
Steven said he and Jay Sarina stayed out searching the brush until 4 a.m.
They went to the nearby Stevens family ranch to sleep after Sarina called
his friends for help.
"We were up by 6 a.m.," said Steven.
Sarina, Steven and the newly arrived men slogged back out in the weather
and in and out of Jones Creek.
Another shot was fired, and Bob Sarina answered with a shot of his own.
One of the men made his way "like a mountain goat" up an embankment and
found Sarina, "pale and not moving" said Steven.
By the time the other men arrived, Sarina was talking, Steven said.
A few hours later the Coast Guard helicopter had lifted him out.
A guardsman was "lowered down, he strapped him in (with) a bear-hug and
they were gone," said Steven.
"He never carries too much ammo - but he will probably will now," Steven
said of Bob Sarina.
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