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Hospital Discharges 'Miracle' Survivor Of North Cascades Plane Crash

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Sixteen-year-old Autumn Veatch was the only survivor of a single-engine plane crash on Saturday.

A north central Washington hospital has discharged a Bellingham girl who emerged from the woods alive two days after a plane crash.

Sixteen-year-old Autumn Veatch spent the last day and a half at Three Rivers Hospital in Brewster.

Doctor James Wallace treated the exhausted survivor.

"Autumn is doing very well,” he said from the hospital on KING 5 TV. “She was severely dehydrated. She had some minor burns, abrasions, several lacerations that were all taken care of and are healing well."

He and friends of Veatch's both credit the teenager's "will to survive" for her getting through the ordeal.

Family friend Sara Esperance told reporters that Autumn Veatch "is feeling well" and doing well. Esperance and another friend say it's a "miracle" that the Bellingham teenager made it through the trauma.

"A strong will... if nothing else this girl has a strong, strong will,” she told KING 5. “Her being able to come out and leave the hospital this quickly just goes to show that."

Veatch was one of three family members on a single engine private plane that crashed on Saturday into a remote mountainside in the North Cascades. Veatch was on the plane with her step-grandparents. She told authorities she was the only one to survive.

Near nightfall Tuesday, searchers spotted plane wreckage from the air in the area from which Veatch hiked out. Crews will try to reach the scene on the ground today.

Now semi-retired, Tom Banse covered national news, business, science, public policy, Olympic sports and human interest stories from across the Northwest. He reported from well known and out–of–the–way places in the region where important, amusing, touching, or outrageous events unfolded. Tom's stories can be found online and were heard on-air during "Morning Edition" and "All Things Considered" on NPR stations in Washington, Oregon, and Idaho.