Saudi youth lost in desert for 3 days dug own 'grave'

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A Saudi youth lost his way in the desert and spent three nights in freezing cold before he was rescued, the Saudi newspaper ‘Al Madina’ has reported.

Ahmed Saleh Al Ghamidi was on a picnic with his family in a valley when he got lost.

The young man lost all hopes of rescue after three nights with no food or water. He dug a hole in the sand as a shelter against the cold and wild animals. In case he was unable to return home, he intended the hole to be his grave.

Al Madina’s journalist visited and interviewed the family of Ahmed Saleh Al Ghamidi in their house in Al Aqiq governorate.

The youth said he had decided with his father and family to go on a picnic and take a stroll in one of the valleys in Al Aqiq governorate.

“While I was driving, my car broke down in Thorad Valley near Al Aqiq dam. I contacted my brothers and they rushed to help me but I asked them to stay with my parents and my family,” he said.

“I drove my brother's car in the direction of my car but unfortunately my brother’s car also broke down. I told them I would go to the place where my parents and family had camped.

“But I lost my way.  I kept walking till I reached to Askan Bani Kabeer and then decided to go back.

“The desert was very cold and I was without proper winter clothing. It was then that I decided to dig my own ‘grave’ to protect myself from the cold and wild animals. If I died in the desert, the ‘grave’ would be my tomb.

“I shivered in the cold and when I heard the sounds of wild animals. I waited there till morning, hoping someone would find me in the morning but it was hopeless.

“On the second night, I suffered from thirst and almost died but I found a bottle of water in the area.

“While walking, I stumbled and sprained my leg. On the third night, I realized that death was approached and I returned to the shelter I had dug so that it would be my grave.

“In fact, at that time I was not thinking about myself but about my parents whom I had left in the car and wondered if my brothers are with them or not.

“On the third day morning, I was so weak that I was lying on the ground. But a passerby saw me and carried me to hospital,” Ahmed Saleh Al Ghamidi said.

The brother of the victim said that his family was worried after they lost Ahmed.

“After the family lost contact with my brother at 1 am and we contacted police, civil defence and news about my missing brother was posted on social networking websites,” said Ahmed’s brother.

“We all realised that my brother was lost and was unlikely to return,” he added.

The nephew of the victim said that his uncle was accompanying his family near Thorad Valley when their car broke down.

He added that his uncle had contacted his relatives and sought  to find a shorter route to return and asked them to explore the site on foot.

“Unfortunately my uncle left his cell phone with his family and he moved away by about 2km.

“When he tried to return, he couldn’t find his way  and got lost between mountains, where he walked about 100km looking for the family among the rugged mountains and valleys full of trees,” he added.

“They found him lying on his back in the valley about 3km away from the vehicle. He was extreme tired, hungry and thirsty. His knee was injured and his voice hoarse by frequent calls for help,” he added.

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