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August 20, 2013

Crews lead stranded teens out of Dogtown

Crews help lead teens out of woods

As the sun set over Babson Reservoir Saturday night, two Rockport boys who had ventured out for a mountain bike ride in the winding Dogtown trails hours earlier found themselves soaked and stranded, surrounded by water and prickly bramble bush.

After attempting a swim back to the familiar path they had lost track of, 13-year-old Eli Bulba dialed 911, while his 14-year-old friend, Peter Derosa, sat next to him.

“They described their location pretty well, but the problem was accessibility. You could only access them by a two-hour hike in through the woods,” Derosa’s dad, Christopher Derosa, said Monday.

The pair had been following a path using a mapping device, when suddenly the trail ended. They made their way to a clearing, then climbed through some brush, and still found no route out of the woods. They swam to no avail then, wet from head to toe, then made the call that allowed police and firefighters to rescue them from a dark night in the woods.

“My son had a cellphone, but like any other 14-year-old, almost 15, he didn’t use it to call me,” the elder Derosa said Monday.

Derosa called to check in on his son soon after the kids called police. He counted on the officers to find the boys, then picked them up at the police station

Derosa expressed his gratitude toward police and firefighters who had responded immediately, plotted ideas for rescuing the kids, then climbed through bramble so thick that it ripped their uniforms, working their way toward the kids then leading them back out of the woods to safety.

“I saw their uniforms, and they were all stitches exposed,” Derosa said. “I appreciated them very much. They took it like a serious rescue operation — and I’m thankful that they did.”

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