Cameron and her three children while they were on the hike.

Family says rescue of mother and three young kids “a miracle”

RUCH, Ore. — “They looked at me and they said we found her… go get your brother we found her and I just took off running,” said Toria Clason, sister-in-law of Cameron Cutler.

For Clason and her family, Tuesday night felt like it would never end.

“You know, people were texting… what can I do? [I said] just say prayers because we really do believe in miracles,” she said.

Clason’s sister-in-law, Cameron Cutler, and her three youngest children went on a hike early Tuesday morning. But hours later, Cutler didn’t pick her oldest son up from school.

“So, grandma and grandpa when they were talking to him about his mom, you know, he said yea, I thought I was kind of hungry so I should maybe make myself some food,” she said.

Even then, Clason says the family didn’t panic.

It wasn’t until her brother drove out to “Tunnel Ridge Trail” and was unable to find his wife’s car that they knew something must be wrong.

“She, the three kids, and the car, there was no indication of any of them,” Clason said.

She says over a hundred people joined Search and Rescue crews overnight combing the area and looking for clues.

“There really is just this power in having people pray for you and with you… just this feeling of unity,” she said.

But as the night dragged on, Clason says her faith was challenged.

“Would I be okay with any outcome? Would I still really believe that God knows me and knows her and knows those kids?” she said.

Then, over 13 hours after the family began their hike, a miracle.

“And it was just so amazing like screaming from the rooftops… they found her,” she said.

Police say Cutler used apple maps to drive to the trail from Talent on a route that had unpaved and unmaintained forest roads in the Anderson Creek area.

At some point, her car got caught between a tree and a ditch.

“She couldn’t go forward or back and so she was just stuck,” said Clason.

With no reception to call for help, Clason says the four returned to their car to eat leftover snacks and plan for the next morning.

“You know, they just rolled down the windows and she has an amazing car battery because they watched Willy Wonka twice,” she said.

Although Clason says the family is overjoyed everything turned out okay, she knows things could have ended very differently.

“It’s hard because I know that there’s times when people pray and they don’t get that miracle,” she said. “But I’m so grateful that she was safe.”

© 2023 KOBI-TV NBC5. All rights reserved unless otherwise stated.

Skip to content