After spending five days and four long, cold nights stranded in remote bushland, a Bunyip family of six were flown to safety by the police air wing on Sunday afternoon.
The Davies were reported as missing on Saturday after the family failed to return from their camping trip to Avon Wilderness Park on Wednesday 6 July when they were expected home.
Friends and family had been unable to make contact with the Davies for five days.
Little had they known that rising floodwaters had impacted the campers’ route home and their four-wheel-drive had become bogged near Glenmaggie.
Mr Davies was not able to find phone reception on higher ground until Sunday morning to call for help.
Police found Dave and Donna Davies, their four children – aged between two and 12 – and their two dogs “safe and well” late afternoon on Sunday 10 July.
The Victoria Police Air Wing rescued the family and flew them to an airfield at Bulldog Junction.
In a family statement posted on social media, the Davies said:
“To all our friends and family who are on Facebook, your thoughts and support at this time are just insanely overwhelming. We are deeply touched by your concern.
“We wish to extend our sincerest thanks to all involved, but a special thanks to Tim and his fellow colleagues at the police air wing unit.”
In another recent rescue mission, a Modella family saved a couple stranded in the snow earlier this month.
A retired couple from Maryborough were on their way to Bright when their car broke down on High Plains Road.
They spent the night cuddling in the back of the van which they had been able to convert into a bed.
“It had snowed all night,” rescuer Tracey Johnson said.
“They had plenty of water and food but the woman, who suffers from diabetes, had a diabetic attack in the morning, so her husband cooked her breakfast which luckily fixed her. He had one lung from a previous operation and suffered breathing problems.
“They were so pleased we found them. We fixed the car, hooked their trailer to our four-wheel-drive and then they followed us back down the mountain until clear of snow. They hugged us and decided to go to Bairnsdale instead of Bright.”
Originally published at Pakenham Gazette.