HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) – The teenager found alive after spending three days in a ravine is recovering from surgery. Doctors put pins in one of Tyler Campbell’s legs. The 19-year-old is also wearing a sling to help heal his dislocated shoulder. Campbell disappeared Saturday night after a church event in Lincoln County.
Hundreds searched that county and one other for teenager. Search teams also looked for the teenager’s truck. A man driving near Interstate 65 five miles from where Campbell was last seen spotted the teenager early Tuesday afternoon. The teenager’s father talked about how things have gone over the last few days.
Lee Campbell has two sons. Tyler is the oldest.
“His mother woke me up around midnight, or shortly after, saying Tyler is not home,” said Lee Campbell.
Campbell didn’t think much of his wife’s worry at first and went back to bed. Both tried to go back to sleep, but Mrs. Campbell couldn’t and woke up her husband again.
“At that time, I literally looked at the clock and said ‘this is not right’. I don’t know exactly what time it was,” said Campbell.
Campbell said Tyler always makes it home at least 30 minutes prior to his midnight curfew.
“We knew it was unlike him. We decided to go out and see if we could find Tyler. I then stopped down to my brother’s house,” added Campbell.
Tyler’s uncle led hundreds on a search in Lincoln and Giles counties. Search teams looked for three days, but never found Tyler.
“I really have no doubt about it. God brought my son up and out of that ditch. That’s what happened,” added Campbell.
A stranger driving near interstate 65 was the person who spotted Tyler. Tyler’s father says a higher power pointed the driver in his son’s direction.
“He’s tough, but God brought him up and out of that ditch. He allowed that truck driver to see him. I thank that man for stopping,” added Campbell.
Campbell says two more people, including a woman, also noticed his son. Campbell got a call from the woman.
“She asked ‘Is this Lee?’ I told her yes. She said ‘there is somebody here who wants to talk to you’. She then said they have found your son,” Campbell told WHNT NEWS 19.
Campbell then heard a familiar voice.
“I was holding the phone up to my ear. I said hello. He said, ‘Hey, Daddy.’ You have to know Tyler. He said that just like it was any other day,” said Campbell with a smile.
Lee Campbell and his family wish to thank every person who assisted in the search or provided information about Tyler.