LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) – Two young cousins wandered away from a campground in the Red River Gorge area of Kentucky, setting off a search in rugged terrain that continued Friday after the boys spent the night missing in the popular recreation area.
The boys disappeared Thursday from the Koomer Ridge campground in eastern Kentucky, said State Police Trooper Joe Veeneman.
One boy was identified as 5-year-old Michael Esposito of Batavia, Ohio. His cousin, 7-year-old Adrian Ross, is from Indiana, the trooper said.
The boys had gone to the campsite with the younger boy’s father and a grandfather of both boys, Veeneman said. The men were setting up the campsite when the boys disappeared, he said. The men and boys had gone ahead of other family members who were to join them, he said.
Search teams combed the woods through the night, the trooper said.
“No luck as of this morning,” Veeneman said.
Overnight lows dipped into the mid-50s. Highs Friday were expected in the upper 70s with showers and thunderstorms possible in the afternoon and evening.
At least nine search and rescue agencies were assisting, the trooper said. Searchers were using dogs to try to track the boys. A helicopter flew over the area Thursday evening as part of the search.
The local sheriff’s office was notified about 6 p.m. EDT Thursday that the boys had disappeared, he said, adding the terrain is treacherous in the area where the boys disappeared.
The Red River Gorge is a heavily wooded, rocky destination popular with hikers, campers and rock climbers.
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