Elation, Then Anguish in the Outback

2nd survivor found after 3 go missing in Alice Springs area; remains of 3rd believed found
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 4, 2019 12:20 PM CST
Elation, Then Anguish in the Outback
In this image, an advertisement is seen for a campsite along the roadside where a woman was found after being stranded in the Alice Springs area in the Australian Outback.   (Australian Broadcasting Corporation via AP)

Days after an Australian woman was rescued in the Outback after being lost for nearly two weeks, some good news and bad news on her two missing companions. Tamra McBeath-Riley, 52, was found alive Sunday and treated for dehydration and exposure, with no sign of 40-year-old Phu Tran and 46-year-old Claire Hockridge, who'd set off for a drive with her on Nov. 19 in the Alice Springs area. Their troubles began when their car got stuck in a riverbed; McBeath-Riley stayed behind with her dog, while Tran and Hockridge took a compass and GPS device and started hiking toward a highway more than 10 miles away to find help, Sky News reports. Although there was still no word of the latter two when McBeath-Riley was found, Tuesday brought a sigh of relief for those who know Tran: The AP reports cattle rancher Ted Fogarty stumbled upon him near a water tank on his property.

"He was pretty hungry and [looking thin], but other than that, he was in good spirits," Fogarty tells the Australian. "He was pretty happy to see me, I think." Tran told Fogarty he'd last seen Hockridge about two days earlier, following a fence line north. "One wanted to go high and the other wanted to follow the fence line," a police rep told NBC. "Sometimes the thinking is you go up high to see where you are, but also after 14 days, you don't have rational thoughts." On Tuesday, police feared Hockridge had run out of water, per the BBC, and on Wednesday, tragic news: Police found what they believe is Hockridge's body, 5 miles away from the highway, per the AP. "Even though Claire has died in terrible circumstances, we are glad Tamra and Phu have been found alive and well," Hockridge's sister told reporters. "We are all grieving and exhausted from the emotional roller coaster that we've ridden." (Read more Australia stories.)

We use cookies. By Clicking "OK" or any content on this site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. Read more in our privacy policy.
Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.