In a statement released Friday afternoon, one of the two Costa Mesa teens rescued from a hike gone wrong in Trabuco Canyon thanked the hundreds who staged the massive search for the pair and said he looked forward to seeing for himself that his hiking partner was recovering.
"I was so relieved to hear that Kyndall [Jack, 18] was found and will be OK," said Nicolas Cendoya, 19. "I can't wait to see her face-to-face and give her a big hug. I just want to see for myself that she's OK."
Cendoya and Jack, who headed into the scrubby wilds near Rancho Santa Margarita on Easter Sunday, got separated early into their nearly weeklong ordeal, he previously told authorities.
Cendoya was airlifted from the canyon Wednesday night. Jack was rescued late Thursday morning from a spot not far from where he was found.
"There are so many people to thank," Cendoya said. "I want to thank all those people who never stopped trying to find me and [Jack], especially Amanda and her friends, who were the ones to find me."