Elderly Kauai woman rescued after 2 nights in the wilderness

Pamela Wilcox Dohrman
Pamela Wilcox Dohrman

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She spent two days in the mountains of Kauai with little food or water. Now, 72-year-old Pam Wilcox Dohrman is safe and sound with her family.

Rescue teams — and even strangers — helped in the search, making all the difference.

Dohrman went to a cabin in Kokee to spend the Mother’s Day weekend with her family, but after setting off on a hike Saturday, she vanished.

Sixty volunteers and several search teams began combing the trails.

“I was near each of our groups. Each group was with a fireman with a radio and I was hoping and praying I would hear on that radio she had been found,” Pam’s husband Mal Dohrman said.

The call finally came after two sleepless nights.

At about 11:30 a.m. Monday, three friends picking maile in the mountains for graduation heard a faint cry. When they found her, she was dehydrated, but all smiles.

“Clifton was yelling from the top of the mountain, ‘What’s your name?’ and she was saying, ‘Pam,'” hiker Kekoa Agustin said.

Agustin, along with Dominic Abalos and Clifton Mission climbed down 100 feet into a ravine off the Kaluapuhi Trail to reach Dohrman.

“She said, ‘Come here. Let me feel your hands.’ I gave her my hands and she squeezed it and hugged me. So stoked,” Agustin said.

The friends took turns carrying Dohrman on their backs to bring her back to the trail. From there, she was taken to the hospital in good condition.

“Smart, too. Drank water from the fern and slept in the bushes,” Mission said.

After they heard that Dohrman was found, her family and friends expressed pure joy.

“I don’t know how you can define relief. Trying to keep the bad thoughts out of your mind and be positive she will be found. Very relieved,” Mal Dohrman said.

The Kauai Fire Department and Mayor Bernard Carvalho send a big mahalo to the dozens of volunteers who helped in the search.

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