A California mother who went missing two weeks ago in Zion National Park after she went hiking has been found alive and safe, authorities said. The woman, Holly Courtier, 38, was reunited with her family on Sunday after an extensive search that lasted more than 12 days.
The National Park Service said search and rescue teams found Courtier on Sunday after receiving "a credible tip from a park visitor that they had seen Courtier within the park." Zion National Park thanked those who had helped search for Courtier, including the Washington County Sheriff's Office, K-9 units, search teams and rangers from other national parks, and volunteers.
Courtier had last been seen on October 6, getting off a private shuttle van at an area leading to several Zion hiking trails. Authorities began searching for her after she didn't show up for her scheduled pickup. Courtier's family has also expressed their joy after finding her safe. Investigators discovered her vehicle outside the park. Inside, there was a receipt for a backpack that investigators believe the mom may have taken with her on her walk.
"We would like to thank the rangers and search teams who relentlessly looked for her day and night and never gave up hope. We are also so grateful to the countless volunteers who were generous with their time, resources and support. This wouldn't have been possible without the network of people who came together," a statement from the family read.
According to authorities, Courtier is in good health and doing fine. Courtier's disappearance made headlines days after search teams failed to find any trace of her. The search was joined by local people and authorities have confirmed that the search operations would not have been possible without their help.
A Long Search
The authorities, however, haven't offered any details on how she was rescued or where she has been in the last 12 days. Courtier's family says that she had lost her nanny job due to the pandemic and decided to go on a road trip to tour American national parks before she disappeared. Since then she had been missing. In the expansive search for Courtier K-9 Units were deployed, drones, as well as on foot search and rescue teams.
Her daughter, Kailey Chambers, previously said Courtier, an experienced hiker, had been traveling the country and visiting national parks since losing her job and never thought that she would go missing in this manner. Courtier had also visited Zion with her daughter several weeks before she disappeared. Courtier's sister Jaime Strong shared an update in a GoFundMe page saying Courtier is 'alive and well' but will need medical help.