New Details About Casey Hathaway, The 3-Year-Old Who Went Missing After Playing In His Backyard

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Casey Hathaway Missing Found Alive North Carolina

A 3-year-old who went missing on Jan. 22 after he disappeared from his grandmother’s backyard was just found alive.

Casey Hathaway was first reported missing after the two other children he was playing with came back into the house and he didn’t. The search for the missing North Carolina toddler brought in 600 volunteers, the FBI, U.S. Marines, divers, NCIS, and sheriffs across twelve counties to aid in his rescue.


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There are no updates so far on how or exactly where he was found. FBI correspondent Shelley Lynch told WTVR that the three-year-old was found alive in Carven County where he went missing told the news outlet. CNN reports that the boy is in good health, reunited with family, and is being taken care of at the Carolina East Medical Center.

“Craven County Sheriff Chip Hughes said authorities are treating Casey's disappearance as a missing child case but ask the community to report anything ‘remotely suspicious’” CNN reports.

Originally, it was reported that the 25-pound and 2-feet-4-inch boy was in danger of freezing temperatures, and volunteers and trained professionals encountered strong wind, heavy rain, and cold temperatures in their search. 

Sheriff Hughes has said that the little boy wasn’t dressed for the extreme temperatures he was facing. In Craven County, the temperature is currently in the lower 50s and low 30s. 


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According to NPR, the search for Casey was interrupted on Thursday due to the weather, and even experienced searchers were having difficulty navigating the dangerous flooded and sinkhole-filled terrain. Breanna Hathaway, Casey’s grandmother, told People that she went looking for the little boy for 45 minutes after he didn’t come back inside. She searched the property with his relatives before she called 911.

“My heart is so broken," she said. "I feel so helpless. We are not going to stop until he is home and we hope you don’t either."

Thankfully, no one did. 

"We did not give up. We were very persistent," Craven County Sheriff Chip Hughes told reporters Thursday night. "The little fella is happy and his parents are very happy, as well."

Casey was reportedly found 50 yards into some nearby woods tangled in some briers after a local resident reported hearing his voice. He was asking for his mother, Brittany Hathaway. The rescue team had to wade through waist-high water to reach him.

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But other than a few scrapes and cuts, Casey was okay. Police said there were no indications of abduction and believe the boy just wandered off.

"We just want to tell everybody that we're very thankful that you took the time out to come search for Casey and prayed for him," his mother said. "He is good. He's up and talking. He's already asked to watch Netflix."


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Natalia Jaramillo is a writer covering pop culture, crime, and horoscopes living in Florida. She also enjoys running and playing with her bichon frise when not writing or studying.