A revealing story of how a 72 old woman Ann Rodgers lost in Arizona desert has survived and guess what, it was done with the help of her dog Queenie.
Ann Rodgers quick thinking and apt survival skills came into play as she spent 9 days in the wilderness of the White Mountains, Arizona.
Arizona Department of public safety gave account of how Ann embarked on a journey to see her grand children in Phoenix from Tuscon on March 31.
On the way, she got lost near Canyon creek on the White Mountain Apache Reservation as her gas was exhausted and her hybrid vehicle charge was depleted when she made a wrong turn as she looked for a gas station.
The Arizona department went further to say that Ann Rodgers in the midst of this confusion climbed some ride line in a bid to search for cell phone signal.
In an interview, Rodgers said “ I had made the decision I could go no further, I was losing too much focus” she said.
Unfortunately this failed and she was left with no choice than to find shelter, water as well as food.
This happened and for the next 9 days, Ann Rodgers and her dog kept survival hopes as they ate plants and drank pond water.
In fact, at some point, she built one distress signal with the help of sticks and rocks as she spelled the word “Help” on the floor.
She told the Post: “I found an elk carcass, bleached white, long gone. Pulled that out on the sandy beach pointed it towards a big sign that said HELP with an exclamation point made out of white stones and sticks“.
Help finally came for Ann Rodgers as an air crew who spotted the found a hand written note on the rock and the distress signal proceeded down the Canyon.
At first, the discovered the shelter abandoned by Rodgers before finding her next to the signal fire while she was waving at the helicopter.
She was then rescued in fair condition although she suffered from exposure and was taken into the helicopter as she was moved to the hospital in Payson for treatment.
After the treatment, she was released from the hospital.
While speaking of her 2 year old Queensland Terrier, Ann Rodgers told the Washington Post “Queenie became my pathfinder; she was the one who would range ahead of me to find the game trail or cowpath or place to cross the river safely” she said.
This goes to show how Queenie played a big role in her survival.
Ann Rodgers had a childhood spent on outdoor spent on hiking and fishing and hence was prepared for her time in the mountain.
She had the skill to survive and what she feared most was about losing energy as she later told the Post.
She spotted a turtle and it became the only protein she would eat during her ordeal.
Rodgers said the survival courses helped her live off the land.