Image credit: AP News
“It’s a miracle,” the father of the young boy who was found told reporters.
CANBERRA – The crew of a police helicopter found a 3-year-old boy who had been reported missing for 3 days in the woods on Monday morning, 6th September. He was found sitting in shallow waters of a creek bed, cupping water in his hands and drinking it.
Anthony “AJ” Elfalak, a toddler with nonverbal autism, had been missing from his family’s remote rural property near the village of Putty. A search party of hundreds had been looking for the young boy prior to him being found.
AJ was found kneeling in the creek when a State Emergency Service officer reached him and touched the boy’s shoulder, SES Chief Inspector Simon Merrick said.
The officer stated that “he (AJ) turned towards him with a massive smile on his face that he will not forget,” Merrick said.
What’s truly remarkable about this situation was the young boy’s ability to find drinking water and making it through 3 nights in the cold (surrounding temperatures reportedly as low as 6 degrees celcius at night) in a sweatshirt and diapers.
Apart from being bitten by ants, diaper rash, scratches and bruises, AJ was physically unharmed. He slept in the ambulance on the way to the hospital for observation before he went home at night to sleep in his own bed.
AJ’s parents, Anthony and Kelly Elfalak, are extremely thankful for everyone who helped look for their son.
“I’m so happy that he is here. He’s with us, he’s safe and well and healthy, that’s all that matters,” said Kelly.