harford polo grounds Grandfather and granddaughter found in the woods

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Sandy Ridge, Centre County Pa.

A 58 year old man and his 17 year old granddaughter are safe at home after getting lost while hunting.

Jeff Cherry of Altoona and his 17 year old granddaughter Megan got separated from their hunting party Saturday afternoon near Sandy Ridge, in Centre County.

Concerns grew about Cherry who is a diabetic and didn have insulin. A search crew including a K 9, located the two early the next morning. They were very thankful for the search party and all the efforts to find them. They made it back home around 3:30 Sunday morning.

Here the account by the PA Game Commission.

Two hunters who became lost Saturday on State Game Lands 33 in Centre County were tracked down by specially skilled Pennsylvania Game Commission wildlife conservation officers and returned to safety early the next morning.

The Game Commission was notified on the evening of Oct. 21 that the two hunters, 58 year old Jeff Cherry, of Altoona, and his 17 year old granddaughter Megan Settlemyer, did not meet up with the rest of their hunting party when expected. As darkness fell and the hours passed, concern for the hunters safety grew because Cherry is diabetic and did not have insulin or food with him.

Wildlife Conservation Officers Mike Steingraber and Derek Daly, both of whom are trained in human tracking, put their skills to work. Daly interviewed members of the hunting party and learned the direction the individuals had planned to go. Steingraber and Daly then looked at a map of the terrain to determine where the hunters might have become lost.

Steingraber, Daly, a K 9 Unit dog and Deputy Wildlife Conservation Officer Jim Snook began searching at the location the hunters last were seen. The dog quickly picked up human scent and the officers saw signs that someone had recently passed through the area.

The officers continued to follow the signs through the woods for about 2 miles to an area with dense vegetation where they thought the hunters might have become disoriented.

don think I ever seen a hunter that happy to see a game warden, Steingraber said.

Cherry and Settlemyer said they had planned to spend the night in the area and try to find their way out of the state game lands in the morning.

Cherry said he accidentally walked a little farther than anticipated. He sought high ground to get his bearings and realized that there was not enough time to make it back out of the woods by nightfall.

had forgotten my flashlight and I didn want to risk trying to get my granddaughter back out of the woods over the rocks in the dark, Cherry said. I told her that we were just going to hunker down and either wait until someone found us, or wait until morning to walk out along the creek bed. I very appreciative of everyone who came out to search for us. The hunters made a good decision to stop moving instead of going even farther in the wrong direction, Steingraber said.

is very important that hunters tell someone else where they plan to hunt and what time they expect to be back, Steingraber said. that information from the other members in the hunting party was critical to us locating this pair of hunters. Steingraber also points out that hunters should carry a backpack with a few supplies such as warm clothes, a flashlight and food in case they get lost. No one ever expects to get lost, but it is good to be prepared.
harford polo grounds Grandfather and granddaughter found in the woods