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Toddler Found After Missing for Hours

COTTAGE GROVE, Ore. — A 2-year-old boy is back safe with his family after he wandered off at a remote campground near Cottage Grove and went missing for hours.

Lane County sheriff’s deputies say several families were around when the small child wandered off onto a nearby trail at the 15-site Rujada Campground. There’s no cell phone service there, so a camper had to leave the area to call 9-1-1.

The child had already been missing for an hour before the first officer got to the scene. The toddler had been missing for two hours when he was found by an OSP Fish and Wildlife trooper in the brush along a trail.

“There’s a lot of things that play into a small child, so we ramp up fairly quickly, but then it takes us awhile to get down here. It’s a 15-20 minute code run,” said Deputy Paul Vitus.

“Good hour before police got out here and he was so far up the trail. I guess he kept going, trying to look for us,” said the boy’s mother.

Four forest deputies, a search and rescue deputy, search and rescue volunteers and two Oregon State Police troopers responded to the search.

Officers want to remind families to keep a close eye on their children over the Labor Day weekend when campgrounds are very busy, especially with small children because things can happen quickly in these rural campgrounds.

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