After three days, a missing toddler was found in the Kentucky woods after authorities found him near a 50-foot rock ledge, only 2,000 feet from his home.
Kenneth Howard, a 22-month-old toddler, disappeared from his home in Kentucky on Sunday, spending over 60 hours by himself, before he was found by the rescue team.
Carter Conley, of Magoffin Search and Rescue, called the rescue miraculous, crediting the finding to God.
“I told the father that it’s a proud day,” Conley said. “It was a team effort, and God led us in the hands and to move that way.”
“I have been on a lot, and this is one of few that were successful,” he said. “I’m very thankful this one was successful. It was all a team effort.”
The search for Kenneth encompassed three days, included multiple agencies, volunteers from all over, helicopters, drones, off-road vehicles, and dogs.
“He’s tough, that little kid is,” South Magoffin Fire Department Assistant Chief, Brent Handshoe said. “I can’t believe all the help. I don’t know how we’re going to thank everybody. But we’ve had people from everywhere. I really don’t know where all they’ve come from, out of state, and everywhere to help us.”
Before the toddler was found, Kenneth’s father offered a $5,000 reward for his son’s return, and when he was found he said it was the “best thing that ever happened to me.”
“Disbelief for a while till they told me they were sure it was him,” said Elden Howard. “I saw a picture of him and said that’s my boy. It tickled me to death.”
When Kenneth went missing, vigils were held all along Eastern Kentucky to pray for his safe return.
One attendee told WKYT: “If there’s one miracle from God left out there, just please let it be for him.”
Kenneth is expecting a fast recovery, as his only ailment after 60 hours in the woods was dehydration.
Kenneth’s safe return was celebrated by praising God
When Kenneth disappeared, search and rescue teams were dispatched, but so were prayer warriors.
Kenneth’s mother Tasha Howard told WSAZ that they owe Kenneth’s return and recovery to God.
“It’s been difficult, but I never did give up because I have faith,” she said. “I know God is with us because we wouldn’t have found him.”
“Thanks to all who prayed, searched and helped in any way!! This is the best news ever,” the Magoffin County Sheriff Department wrote on Facebook.