After 22 hours in the wilderness, 4-year-old boy from Torrance found safe

A Southern Caifornia 4-yr. old was found Friday morning, June 21, 2024, after going missing overnight near the Rancheria Campground in Fresno County.
The boy was found safe after he was reported missing near the Rancheria Campground. (Fresno County Sheriff Department)

After disappearing from a campground in the Sierra National Forest, a 4-year-old boy from Torrance was found by a search-and-rescue party a day later and reunited with his parents, officials said.

The boy’s family reported him missing about 11 a.m. Thursday near the Rancheria Campground, which sits along Huntington Lake and is surrounded by a dense forest of pine and fir trees of the Kaiser Wilderness, north of Fresno.

A search-and-rescue team composed of 50 people, including Fresno County sheriff’s deputies, forest rangers and volunteers, launched an extensive effort to find the child, who was last seen wearing shorts and a T-shirt, officials said.

Around 8 a.m. Friday, roughly 22 hours after his disappearance, the boy was discovered in good condition about a quarter-mile from the campground.

In a Facebook post, the Fresno County Sheriff’s Office announced that authorities had located the boy “in good condition,” noting that “he was just tired and hungry.”

The boy has since been reunited with his parents.

Authorities credited the collaboration of several law enforcement agencies and community members for finding the boy.

“This was an amazing show of teamwork and dedication,” a post read from the sheriff’s office.

“Many people offered to help join the search, kept their eyes peeled, spread the word on social media and sent prayers up. All of this undoubtedly helped to bring [him] home safely.”

Sign up for Essential California for news, features and recommendations from the L.A. Times and beyond in your inbox six days a week.

This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.