Newly released 911 audio tapes reveal the bravery of three boy scouts who helped save their scout leader who was dragged into a cave and attacked by a bear.
“I think the bear’s on top of him,” one scout can be heard telling the dispatch operator on a 911 audio tape.
The young boys’ 911 call made on December 20th lasted about an hour and 20 minutes. The three scouts and their leader, Christopher Petronino, 50, had been hiking in Splitrock Reservoir in Rockaway Township, New Jersey, when the bear attacked Petronino in a cave they were exploring.
At one point in the call, one of the scouts said, “If we don’t make it out of this alive, I love you guys.”
The scouts kept calm and told the 911 what they were doing to try to save the leader.
“One of the scouts is putting food into the cave,” said one scout.
First leaving sandwiches near the cave entrance to draw the bear out. They then created a fire so rescuers could find them.
“Okay, the scouts are making a signal fire right now. Okay, we’ll keep it contained and make it a lot of smoke. Okay.”
Eventually the scout leader made it out of the cave and away from the bear by hitting him on the nose with a rock hammer.
He too called 911. When the 911 operator asked where he was bleeding, he admited he was hurt pretty badly.
“Left arm. Left leg. Neck and head. He got me good,” said Petronino.
After an hour and twenty minutes, rescuers were able to find the scout leader and load him onto a helicopter.
Petronino was released from the hospital soon after the attack and is recovering at home.