Woman Found Alive In California After Week-Long Search
A California woman who had been reported missing for six days was found alive on Wednesday, sitting in a snow-covered SUV about 50 miles north of where she lived. According to reports from CNN, her vehicle was found roughly 150 yards off the road, according to a press release from the Butte County Sheriff’s office.
68-year-old Paula Beth James was located by a search helicoptor that saw her inside of a Toyota 4Runner in the Butte Meadows, a remote area in the mountains just north of Sacramento. James has dementia, according to her family, but was reportedly conscious and speaking when she was discovered. She got treated at the Enloe Medical Center.
Mountain travel in the area had been “highly discouraged” by the National Weather Service because a heavy winter snow storm was expected to hit. Temperatures in the area that James was found reportedly hit the low 30s earlier this week.
Authorities don’t know exactly how long James had been in the area, but say she was visibly cold when she was saved by a pair of search and rescue teams. “She was awake and conscious. And she looked at them and she said, ‘I’m very cold, I hope you brought a blanket,’” said spokesperson Megan McMann.
Family members told reporters that James stayed warm by occasionally turning on the heat and by using the blankets and floormats in her vehicle. They went to to say that she was extremely dehydrated and frostbitten.
James was last been seen on January 9 and her rescue was the culmination of more than 100 hours of searching from local crews.