Corydon man suffers hypothermia after being rescued deep in Indiana state forest
Officer Jim Schreck knows Harrison-Crawford State Forest all too well. He's rescued dozens of hikers over the years, although he's never seen anything like what he saw this week.
HARRISON COUNTY, Ind. (WDRB) -- Officer Jim Schreck knows Harrison-Crawford State Forest all too well.
He's rescued dozens of hikers over the years, although he's never seen anything like what he saw this week.
"It was unusual for him to not tell folks where he was going," Schreck said.
Ronald Harris' family was pretty sure he went to the state park after work Wednesday. But when he didn't answer his phone hours later, they called 911.
"We didn't know if he was injured or hurt or anything," Schreck said.
So Schreck, along with dozens of first responders and a K-9 unit, combed more than a mile of the rugged terrain. There was no sign of the 59-year-old Harris.
But searchers caught their first break when they spotted Harris' pickup truck sitting right in a parking area off of Old Forest Road.
"We tracked for probably an hour. The dog tracked pretty well," Schreck said. "For whatever reason, we lost the track."
Now cold and dark, searchers finally caught another break. The group pinged Harris' cell phone, tracking him within a quarter of a mile of their location.
They found the Corydon man face down near a ravine. His neck was pinned against a tree.
"One of those large rocks was actually on his back," Schreck said. "He was blue totally blue in the face."
Their desperate search and rescue turned to a recovery ... or so they thought.
"Heard him make some guttural noises," Schreck said. "I shouted 'He's alive!' And someone responded 'There's no way!'"
The group strapped him to a stretcher and carried him back to the road where medics flew him to University of Louisville Hospital.
"His cell phone and that dog saved his life," Schreck said. "Very lucky. Very fortunate."
Harris apparently slipped while hiking. He only had hypothermia and minor injuries.
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