After missing on 24 July, an 18-year-old teen has been found 8 days later in the wooded Cascade Mountains east of Seattle.
On Friday, Giovanna "Gia" Fuda went missing, after last being seen on a video at a coffee shop in Index, Washington. The day after, her car was found out of gas on Highway 2 between Skykomish and Steven's Pass.
"We are absolutely thrilled to know that search and rescue located her alive," Sgt. Ryan Abbott, with the King County Sheriff's Office, said at a press conference Saturday evening. "She's in stable condition. She is with her parents and being transported to a local hospital."
Abbott said that rescuers and authorities found a notebook that belonged to Fuda in the woods off Highway 2 at about 2:45 p.m. local time. The investigating team decided to follow the stream and found Fuda's clothes and shoes. The team found the girl after keeping their search 2 miles from the bottom of the ravine.
"It shows that miracles do happen and don't ever quit, and that's what we were doing," Abbott said. "They just continued to search and thank god they found her."
On July 27, The King County Sheriff's Office announced that the girl's disappearance was suspicious, however, authorities claimed during a press conference that the girl might have lost her way back while looking for gas. According to Abbott, the closest gas station to Fuda's car was 10 miles away, adding that he has no clue how did the girl end up there.
A doctor was the one to find Fuda first and tried to provide her with initial care. However, Abbott said that Fuda was unable to share what happened to her while she was missing.
"I feel hopeful, but I don't feel very good," Kristin Fuda, Gia's mother said. "You just don't know what to think, it's totally unknown."
"We are thrilled for the family," Abbott said. "They have been out with us here. They have been trying to help us search; they've been a great support. And from my understanding, of course, the parents were thrilled when they found out Gia was alive."