Ohio deputies were able to reunite a missing 3-year-old boy with his loved ones in footage captured by a police helicopter.
The child, Ilya Dunin, went missing on July 20 after a family friend lost sight of him when he wandered into a cornfield in Xenia, 15 miles east of Dayton.
The boy managed to get a mile from his home, traveling through fields with corn as high as 10 feet and crossing a 55-mph road and going through a creek in the area, according to the Greene County Sheriff’s Office.
His parents Bella and Leo Dunin called for help as soon as they found out he was missing.
“We had a close family friend visit, and she comes to play with him, so they were playing, and my husband was at work, and I went inside to feed the baby and 30 minutes later, I get a phone call from the family friend saying she lost him in the cornfield,” mom Bella told USA TODAY. “He got away from her somehow and the cornfield is about 10 feet high, I believe, so it was pretty easy to lose him.”
The search grew from the sheriff’s office to the fire department and then expanded to volunteers and neighbors. Around 100 people were searching for Ilya.
In addition to drones deployed by the sheriff’s office, the Ohio State Highway Patrol provided ariel support.
The first sign of the boy was his shoes next to the creek that runs between the fields. K-9s were deployed by law enforcement and they talked to troopers in the air.
After two hours, he was discovered walking out of a cornfield into a soybean field.
The footage shows a teen neighbor greeting him apparently in his native language, Russian, before picking him up as the farmer who owns the field gave the pilot a thumbs up.
WATCH THE CLIP BELOW:
The boy’s mother said she was shocked by how much ground he covered and how he managed to get away despite how “hypervigilant” she is.
“But you are not alone,” she told the outlet. “Everyone was amazing, I cannot even think of a better response. Everyone was kind and understanding and it really gave me a lot of hope.”