7-Year-Old Japanese Boy Abandoned by Parents Found Alive in Forest After 6 Days

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Photograph: Jiji PR/AFP/Getty Images

Parents trying to teach their son a lesson got a terrifying surprise this week when the boy ended up lost in a forest for six days before being found unscathed through the entire ordeal.

Yamato Tanooka was with his parents in bear-inhabited woods near Hokkaido, a large island in northern Japan. His parents reportedly left the boy as “punishment” for throwing rocks at cars. They claimed to have driven off briefly without him only to return minutes later to find the boy had disappeared. For six days, hundreds of people and authorities searched the woods, but to no avail. It wasn’t until early Friday morning that the boy turned up some 2.5 miles from where he originally vanished.

From NPR:

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“The boy was found Friday morning (local time) at a Self-Defense Forces training site and identified himself as the missing child, The Japan Times reports.

“According to reporter Karyn Nishi-Poupee of Agence France-Presse, the boy ‘was found living in a military base where he walked.'”

Miraculously, the boy sustained no major injuries and seemed to only be suffering from minor dehydration and a few scratches on his hands and feet, the Associated Press reported.

The AP spoke to the boy’s father outside the hospital where he was taken and reported the father apologized to his son.

“I told him I was so sorry for causing him such pain.”

The situation could have turned out much worse, but luckily the boy sustained no serious harm and hopefully these parents learned a valuable lesson.

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