BARTON TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WZZM)- Atwo-year-old lost and alone in a Newaygo County forest for 24 hours is safe and back with her family.
Searchers found toddler Amber Smith Wednesday afternoon on federal forest land about a mile and a half from her home in Barton Township, northwest of Big Rapids.
Department of Natural Resources Officer Jeff Ginn found the child.
"Everywhere you look you think you are going to see this girl," explained DNR Officer Mike Bomay, who was also in the search. "I hear voices and look to my right and Conservation Officer Jeff Ginn is carrying the child out of the woods. We were high fiving and so excited it was over. She looked a lot better than we thought she would."
Amber left her home on East 13 Mile Road near Cottonwood Avenue about 2p.m. Tuesday.
She was found about 1:30p.m. Wednesday.
"Very stressful," says her mother, Diane Smith. "Didn't know whether she was going to be alive or dead. Have that stuff going through your mind. I am happy she is alive. I can't ask for more."
Her mother says Amber was dirty, dehydrated and exhausted, but otherwise okay.
The first thing she asked for after a cold night in the forest was hot chocolate.