NYC man missing for days found alive near swamp

June 4, 2010 3:15:08 AM PDT
A man missing since Sunday was found alive in the woods Thursday after his car careened off the Taconic State Parkway.

Thomas Wopat Moreau, 22, spent four long days and 12 exhausting hours with no food, no water and no sign of help.

"He was in pretty rough shape, but he was one happy person that we were able to find him," senior investigator Gary Mazzacano said.

After veering off the Taconic State Parkway, Moreau's BMW flew 400 feet and flipped four times.

Moreau spent the next four days and nights badly hurt and alone in a secluded area six miles north of the Columbia County border.

Despite painful back and leg injuries, he managed to crawl nearly 250 feet to better his chances of being rescued.

"This is a miracle," Captain Scott Brown said. "For him to survive this with those types of injuries and being out in those elements for 4 1/2 days is just incredible."

The East Village man vanished Saturday night. He was last seen leaving a party in East Fishkill and heading to his mother's home in Columbia County.

Friends and family frantically and desperately searched for him. Troopers used Moreau's cell phone as a tracking device. That technology narrowed down their search to a three-mile heavily wooded area. Troopers combed the woods for days, refusing to give up.

"As we were yelling to each other, 'We found the car!' I heard someone crying for help out in the distance," Mazzacano said.

"We went down there and the individual was suffering from a serious back injury," Brown added. "He was unable to walk. He had been in these elements for the last 4 1/2 days without water or food."

Moreau is recovering at Albany Medical Center, surrounded by family and friends.