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KYMA Exclusive: Yuma man shares survival story

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Greg Manary, survivor

Greg Manary spent days stranded in the Kofa Wildlife Refuge

YUMA, Ariz. (KYMA, KECY) - A Yuma man spent four-days stranded in the desert with little water and no food. On Wednesday, he opened up to News 11's Ciara Encinas about his ordeal.

Greg Manary is home recovering now, but said he says there were times he wondered if he'd survive.

Manary says he was heading to a campsite to meet with some friends when he got into trouble.

"When I got up a dry wash. I got hung up on a boulder. I couldn’t get out. I couldn’t get unstuck. Even though I had a shovel and a jack and things. I was unable to extricate myself," said Manary.

He tried digging the rocks out from under his SUV, but his body gave out and so did his jack.

The 77-year-old says he knew it was time to call on his Marine Corp training.

"I spent 32 years in the Marine Corps," said Manary. "I just curled up in the back of the SUV and camped,"

He said he had a pint of water left when he was rescued and he never lost hope.

On January 15, Manary's prayers were answer.

“On the fifth day, it was one of the most beautiful sights I’d ever seen greeted my eyes, a Border Patrol helicopter coming right down the canyons staring straight at me," said Manary.

He said from there they gave him fluids through an IV because he was dehydrated and took him away in the Border Patrol Air Marine Operations helicopter.

It took a small army of local, state and federal law enforcement and volunteers to bring Mannery home safely. Yuma County Sheriff's deputies, Arizona Department of Public Safety Troopers, U.S. Border Patrol agents, and the Civil Air Patrol were among the agencies involved in the rescue.

Arizona News / Top Stories / Yuma County
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Ciara Encinas

Ciara Encinas is an Emmy award-winning multimedia journalist who joined the KYMA in May 2018.


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