A frantic search has yielded happy results, with a 104-year-old man rescued and reunited with his worried family. After going missing, Nqisa Nqokola was recovered with the help of a K9 search and rescue unit.
104-year-old Nqisa Nqokola, who went missing on Friday from the small community of Berlin, East London, has been reunited with his family after a harrowing ordeal.
The madala was found, cold and tired, in thick bush a short distance away from his home, thanks to rescue efforts.
Warrant Officer Fred Dicks of the K9 rescue team said that the discovery of the elderly man was thanks to a 'combined effort'.
Children playing nearby had told Dicks when he hd arrived on the scene that they had seen a man enter the bush:
"I went with a dog into the bush and, after a couple of minutes, we encountered an old man sitting there, but he didn't fit the description and so we continued for a couple more minutes and made the discovery."
Dicks told News24 that the police, K9 unit and the community had been paramount to the search, splitting up in the bush to search for the Nqokola.
Recalling the discovery, Dicks said they had found him around noon on Saturday, a good 24 hours since he had first gone missing:
"He was speaking, but in isiXhosa, so I couldn't really understand what he was saying, and he looked a bit confused, but upon reaching the entrance to the bush, Nqokola was handed over to his family."
Creative methods had to be deployed to remove the man from the brush, as emergency vehicles could not reach the position. But a short trip on a stretcher later, Nqokola was reunited with his relieved family.
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