The two Costa Mesa hikers lost for days in Trabuco Canyon will not be billed for the intense search that led to their rescue from the south Orange County wilderness.
The search, which included agencies from Orange, Ventura, Los Angeles, Riverside and San Bernardino counties, was launched Easter Sunday and lasted five days before the second of the hikers was rescued.
Kyndall Jack, 18, and Nicolas Cendoya, 19, had set off on what was to be a day hike before leaving the trail and becoming lost in the thick brush and rugged hillsides, officials said.
Cendoya was located April 3, shoeless and disoriented. Jack was discovered the following day in shoulder-high brush. Both were hospitalized and later described a harrowing ordeal in the wilderness, during which they became so dehydrated that they began hallucinating.
Neither teen will be billed for the rescue efforts, according to Gail Krause, public relations manager for the Orange County Sheriff’s Department.
A cost figure for the rescue has not been released.
Cendoya and Jack could not be reached for comment Wednesday.
An OCSD reserve deputy who fell 60 feet during Jack’s rescue is now in good condition and undergoing rehabilitation and physical therapy, Krause said.
Those who wish to contribute to his recovery can make donations to Project 999 at P.O. Box 241, Santa Ana, Calif., 92702. Project 999 supports injured or killed officers and their family members in Orange County, Krause said.