Sun, Jun 27, 2004
Missing 14-year-old found in Poconos
The Associated Press has reported that a 14-year-old
girl with Down syndrome who had gone missing for 10
hours from a religious retreat has been found
by volunteers searching a swamp from the air using ultralight
"We basically flew low over the trees until we saw her in the
grassy swamp," pilot Todd Ritchie said Wednesday. "When we saw her,
she waved at us. We radioed the ground teams and circled until they
got to her."
Some 70 people joined the search for for Heidi Burkardt, who had
gone missing at 10:00 on Wednesday at the Spruce Lake Christian
Ritchie, Bill Barry and Glen Kreckman are all members of the
Wing Nuts ultralight pilots group at Flyin Dollar airfield in
Barrett Township (PA), found the lost girl at approximately 20:00
some three miles from the site of the retreat.
"When we found her, she looked OK," said Bob Hawk of the East
Penn Mountaineers Search and Rescue group. "She was a little
cold and shivering, but that was all."
Search team members cheered when Heidi was reunited with
her mother, Cynthia Burkardt. The pair was visiting the retreat
with a church group from Lancaster (PA).
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