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EMS Captain who found 3-year-old Casey Hathaway shares emotional experience

(WITN)
Published: Jan. 25, 2019 at 9:09 PM EST
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More than a dozen agencies from around Eastern North Carolina provided resources to help aid in the search for three-year old Casey Hathaway over the course of four days.

But when all was said and done, it was Chocowinity EMS Captain Shane Grier that finally pulled Hathaway to safety. "I don't think I was around anybody that wasn't crying," said Greir, as he detailed the moment he pulled Hathaway to safety Thursday night.

Grier says they received a tip from a citizen who lived in the area, and that tip turned out to be their most significant lead.

"He was heavily embedded in a briar thicket or a thorn thicket. We immediately grabbed the child up, escorted him out, and started transport to the hospital."

Hathaway spent more than 55 hours entrenched in freezing temperatures, heavy rain, and gusting winds. But search and rescue teams found the three-year old responsive and in good spirits upon his rescue.

"You could tell he was very cold so we immediately started warming him up once we got him to the vehicle. The more we warmed him up, it seemed the better he got," said Grier, who attributes Hathaway's safe rescue to all parties involved.

"The support we had from all these agencies, the community, everybody. It's overwhelming."

Asked what it was that kept Hathaway safe all that time? Captain Greir said, "It was hard to say what it was. I know there was a lot of people praying for him."