March 28, 2020

"It was such an amazing sight. She woke up, stood up and we saw it was her. It was so, so surreal and so amazing. And what’s more amazing was how calm she was."

"I figured after two nights alone in the woods, she would be panicked and distraught and crying [but instead 4-year-old Vadie Sides just said] 'Oh, I can’t wait to tell my mommy about my two nights out here.' She was just talking, talking, talking."

Said Edward D. Casey — the commander of the 187th Fighter Wing of the Alabama Air National Guard — who was one of the first searchers to find the little girl, quoted in "4-Year-Old Girl, Lost in the Woods for 48 Hours, Is Found Unharmed" (NYT).

The girl was with her dog, and they found her when they heard the dog bark. The girl is quoted: "We took a walk, but then I got too fast and got running and got lost and then I started calling for Nanny, but Nanny was too far.... I slided, slided down a waterfall that was so slippery [and I saw a house but] I was brave not to go in.... I slept by a road the first night and the second night I slept where they found me." Video of the girl telling her story here (on Facebook).

32 comments:

Gahrie said...

The ability not to panic and do something stupid is very underrated. I know that her parents' overwhelming feeling right now is relief, but they should be proud of her too.

Yancey Ward said...

Good think Alabama isn't on lockdown, they would have to arrest her for non-essential travel.

Mark said...

Two lessons --

Dogs can be quite the protectors, especially of kids that they see as little puppies.

Kids can also show a lot of what we think of as bravery -- suggesting that a lot of the time, fear is learned.

How many kids today are panicking because mom and dad are? Otherwise, they would not know that what we are going through is out of the ordinary.

Yancey Ward said...

Yeah, I think the dog helped a lot- it apparently never left her, and I am sure that was reassuring to such a young child.

Mark said...

A lack of separation anxiety at that age, though, would seem to be rather extraordinary.

Yancey Ward said...

I think the story itself, Mark, tells you about why the separation anxiety wasn't as bad- she got to take a walk in the woods with the dog- the parents probably aren't hoverers.

Mark said...

Yeah. At four, my parents basically opened the door and said go run around the neighborhood and play.

That were different times, though.

rhhardin said...

It's not up to Jessica in the Well standards.

Harsh Pencil said...

My daughter, when 4, was stung by a bee, but wasn't scared. She said at the time "I was brave of that bee" meaning the opposite of "I was scared of that bee." This girl said "I was brave not to go in" meaning "I knew I shouldn't go in to a stranger's house, but I would have if I were scared of being alone, but I wasn't scared of being alone. I was brave of being alone."

Clayton Hennesey said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Rory said...

"Dogs can be quite the protectors, especially of kids that they see as little puppies"

I got my dog when he was about four. Since then, he's rarely had close contact with young children. If we're out, though, and he sees an unattended child he just stops what we're doing until he's able to associate the kid with someone big. He'll herd them if he has to.

mockturtle said...

What a great outcome!!! :-)

toxdoc said...

Rory, our dog is the same way. All kids are awesome to her but kids without large humans really worry her. She just sits and watches them until she knows they are ok. She looks and acts a lot like Sam from Looney Tunes

Mark said...

Girl dogs might exhibit more of that maternal/protector behavior, but who knows?

Mark said...

I should clarify though -- I mean cis-girl dogs.

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Jason said...

Worth the click.

Trust me.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IuLudNsN-lY

toxdoc said...

Mark, you may be right. Our female is all girl (she is a furry princess, after all) and she sort of places her self between her "herd" and the threat. Her brothers will move toward the threat but she tends to stay put. I never worried about things when we had male dogs. Nor did my wife. They had a social distance that was different than the females. Both males and females are super protective but its different. Our current dog really want a shepherd to work with. Their job is to gather and keep the herd in line, her job is to look regal and as she was told tonight, be a big ass dog.

Char Char Binks, Esq. said...

I probably could have been brave and reasonably competent until I was about eight years old. By the time I was 15 I couldn’t do anything worthwhile at all. I’m still trying not to useless, but old habits die hard.

n.n said...

Inordinate worth.

elkh1 said...

What did she eat in three days?

Paul said...

She had a faithful dog!!! That went a long way to assure her she would be ok!

traditionalguy said...

We have us another candidate for Marine Recon training. She can be brave to go out alone and wait until time to laser the enemy targets for Hellfire missiles. A truly Brave little warrior.

tim maguire said...

That’s an amazing little story. After 24 hours, the chances she’s still alive is pretty close to zero, that she’s not even hurt is a miracle. Her parents should be very proud (and relieved, of course).

Dust Bunny Queen said...

After 24 hours, the chances she’s still alive is pretty close to zero, that she’s not even hurt is a miracle. Her parents should be very proud (and relieved, of course).

Well.....She was with her dog. GOOD DOG!!! Probably the main reason for her survival. I love cats, but in a pinch...you really really need a dog. Your cat would decide you are an idiot and go home where it is warm and dry

Happy ending. Brave little girl. Relieved parents. Relieved everyone!!! and the "bestest Good Boy" (or Girl doggy) should get all the treats.

Rick.T. said...

Maybe a happy ending for Nanny as well: Get fired. Go on unemployment. And get an extra $600!

Leland said...

I'm impressed. The girl, her parents that raised her, the dog, and the good people that found her. Nanny... not so much.

MSOM said...

This generation of children has been raised to believe that it is safer to spend days alone in the woods than to ask a stranger for help.

Jamie said...

Our little SPCA mutt, who looks like a tiny, 20-lb German shepherd, is extremely protective of our (adult-sized) kids, especially our daughter. When the kids are tussling, she leaps right in barking and starts pulling at any hem of clothing she can reach to get them apart. Further, when we're in different places in the house, she'll check on each of us in turn, sometimes standing in doorways and giving a little growly "mmm" with her eyebrows drawn in to make it clear that she's not happy with our separation. She herds us when we're outside, but in the house she just nags. She'll keep trying to get us together until she succeeds.

rcocean said...

So, basically the nanny lost the girl, and it took 48 hours to find her. To misquote Wilde: "To lose one child, may be regarded as a misfortune; to lose two looks like carelessness."

Iman said...

F the NYT... https://static.pjmedia.com/instapundit/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/tom_coburn_nyt_obit_3-29-20.jpg

ALP said...

This reminds me of the older gentleman I used to know (since passed) that was a young boy during WW2 in the UK. He said the following about his WW2 experience as a child: "Oh we thought it was a game!"