GREAT BARRINGTON, Mass. — A 13-year-old special needs child who went missing early Thursday afternoon during a hike was located shortly before 7 p.m.
Police Chief William Walsh and Fire Chief Charles Burger said more than 75 rescuers took part in the search that successfully located the child.
Rescuers responded at 12:15 p.m. to Fountain Pond State Park, a 250-acre park bisected by U.S. Route 7, for a report of a missing hiker. Upon arrival, officials were told that the boy became separated from his group during a hike and could not be located.
Firefighters began a search of approximately 3 miles of trails, but were unable to locate him.
Multiple jurisdictions were summonsed to conduct a thorough search of the area, including:
• Great Barrington Police and Fire Crews
• Great Barrington Police K-9
• K-9 units from Pittsfield and Williamstown
• The Berkshire County Sheriff's Office Dive Team and Mobile Communications Vehicle
• The Massachusetts State Police Airwing, State Police Search and Emergency Response Team
• Berkshire County Mountain Search and Rescue Team
• Massachusetts Environmental Police
• The Sheffield Fire Department
• The Stockbridge Fire Department and Stockbridge Fire Boat
Crews deployed over a wide area. Thankfully, the boy was found shortly before 7 p.m. at the top of a ridge well off the trails. He was found unharmed and in good health. Rescuers reunited him with his parents.
"This was a tremendous team effort that involved dozens of rescuers from many of our neighboring and partner agencies. I am very pleased that so many resources could muster in a short time, resulting in the successful rescue of this young boy," Walsh said.
"Mutual aid is a force multiplier that allows Berkshire County emergency services to greatly increase our effectiveness in times of need. The system showed its value today, and a child was reunited with his family," said Burger.
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