WAILUKU, Hawaii (AP) — A Hawaii woman has been found alive in a forest on Maui island after going missing more than two weeks ago.
Amanda Eller was found injured in the Makawao Forest Reserve, the Maui News reported Friday.
Family spokeswoman Sarah Haynes confirmed she spoke with Eller’s father John. Eller was being airlifted to safety.
The physical therapist from the Maui town of Haiku went missing on May 8. Her white Toyota RAV4 was found in the forest parking lot with her phone and wallet inside.
Hundreds of volunteers have searched for her since.
Javier Cantellops said he was searching for Eller from a helicopter along with Chris Berquist and Troy Helmers when they spotted her about 3:45 p.m. near the Kailua reservoir, according to Maui Police Department spokesman Lt. Gregg Okamoto and the Honolulu Star-Advertiser.
Cantellops told the newspaper that she was in the bed of a creek with waterfalls on either side.
The Maui Fire Department brought Eller to a hospital for evaluation, Okamoto said in a statement.
It’s unknown how or to what extent Eller was injured, as well as how she survived until she was found.
The Honolulu newspaper also reported that a photo was posted to a Facebook page tracking the search, showing a smiling Eller with what appeared to be injuries to her face and dirt on her clothing. The photo shows Eller surrounded by Cantellops, Berquist and Helmers.
Maui County Mayor Michael Victorino said he’s grateful for the efforts of family, friends, volunteers and first-responders/
“This search and rescue was truly a community collaboration of Maui County first responders, family, friends and community volunteers,” Victorino said in a statement. “I extend my deepest appreciation for everyone involved in searching for and locating Amanda. Your work, determination and sacrifice has helped return her to her loving family. God bless them all.”
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