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Missing 3-year-old Casey Hathaway found alive

Facing heavy rains, gusty winds and low visibility, rescuers and law enforcement combed the difficult Craven County, North Carolina, terrain – focusing on up to 1,000 acres of heavily wooded areas.

On day three, and the tip led the search team to a spot where they were able to hear the 3-year-old's voice calling for his mother, Craven County Sheriff Chip Hughes told reporters at a press conference Thursday night.

They followed his call 40 to 50 yards into the woods, through the water, to find Casey tangled in vines and thorns, Hughes said.

He was cold, authorities said, but alive and responsive.

 Casey Lynn Hathaway
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Casey is receiving medical treatment for cuts and scrapes at Carolina East Medical Center, said Shelley Lynch, spokeswoman for the FBI Charlotte field office.

Buty, police say he is in good spirits and has been reunited with his family

What was really special was how Casey brightened up when his little sister was brought in to see him, Hughes said. Sheriff Hughes said there was no sign of abduction in this case, and he thanks departments and volunteers who came together to find Casey.

"Thank you all for coming out, all the prayers," Casey's father said Thursday. "It's a lot."

"He's good, he's up and talking," Casey's mother told reporters at a press conference. "

CNN's Pamela Kirkland and Marlena Baldacci have contributed to this report

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