Missing California Couple Survived on Rainwater, Oranges, and Pie

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Cecil Knutson and Dianna Bedwell, who went missing on May 10 survived on rainwater, oranges and pie while they were stranded in the desert in California. The missing couple was found on May 24 in a remote area of the Los Coyotes Indian Reservation near Warner Springs, California. Knutson, 79 and his wife Bedwell, 68 were found by off-roaders who reported them to the police.

On arriving, law enforcement found Knutson dead and Bedwell severely dehydrated. She was airlifted to the Palomar Hospital in Escondido and remains in a serious condition.

The couple, who had been married for more than 25 years, had tried to collect rainwater by placing cups around the car. They only had a few oranges and pie to eat and that soon got over. Knutson’s cause of death is yet to be determined but, their son told the police that both of them were diabetic and needed insulin.

The couple, who were from Fullerton, had last been seen on a surveillance video leaving the Valley View Casino in San Diego County around 2 p.m. On May 10. They were driving to their son’s house in La Quinta, Riverside County in a white 2014 Hyundai Sonata. They tried taking a shortcut and were stranded after the car got stuck on a boulder. The car was on an incline and had gone off the road. It was surrounded by mud. No foul play is suspected and the car is being examined.

After the missing couple did not arrive at their son’s home, family members and search-and-rescue teams went out to look for them. In the past two weeks, volunteers had also joined in to search the area between the casino and Riverside County. The couple had probably tried to walk to the road to seek assistance but could not make it.

By Anugya Chitransh


NBC New York: Couple Stranded in Desert Tried Surviving on Pie, Rainwater: Police

Photo Courtesy of Dalton’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License