Missing boy on dirt bike

July 18, 1984
East of Lake Elsinore

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By John Dew

At 10:30 p.m. the phone rang. It was Walt Walker asking if I could take one of the rescue vans to Elsinore. A nine-year-old boy had been last seen by his parents just at dark.

The family was out from Garden Grove, had planned to go home that afternoon, but had decided to stay over with friends in Elsinore until the next day. What better way to celebrate this decision than for everyone to get on his motorcycle and have one more ride on the dirt trails in the nearby hills? That's how it happened that the youth got lost. He was riding his yellow Kawasaki 80 when he became separated from his family.

We were in Elsinore by 11:00 p.m. being led to the place where the little boy had last been seen. The area had been and was still being covered by friends with four wheel drives and motorcycles. We added our strength to the search plus the manpower and four wheel power we could get from the Hemet team. At 2:30 a.m. we asked for the Sheriff's fixed wing aircraft to fly search at first light. This was granted provided we could supply an observer. Bob Elliot of the Hemet team was to be the observer and the plane was to arrive at Perris airport at 4:30 a.m. With this new information Bob left for Perris and we all bedded down for two hours rest until the aircraft arrived. The plane didn't get there at 4:30 but did arrive later. They had been flying search for about 30 minutes when one of the motorcycle riders came riding into Base with the little boy sitting on the seat in front of him. He had found him about 3 or 4 miles from Base. He seemed to be no worse for his night out.

All our team members and the ones helping us from Hemet were given the good news and called back to Base.

We got home about 10 or 10:30 that morning ready for a couple more hours of shut eye and happy that the little boy was all right.