Stranded Nev. man "jumped into action" to save family

Two adults and four children spent two days stranded in the Nevada mountains before a searcher found them huddled near their overturned Jeep
Two adults and four children spent two days s... 01:58

SAN FRANCISCO -- The family's story of survival during sub-zero nights in Nevada's high desert begins with a father's decision to stay close to their overturned Jeep.

"The father jumped into action, knew that they had to stay warm, and the first thing he did was build a fire," said emergency room Dr. Douglas Vacek.

Chris Montes CBS News
 James Glanton, a local mine worker, was with Christina McIntee, their two children and her niece and nephew, three to ten years old. They kept warm by building a fire inside a spare tire. Volunteer searcher Chris Montes was first to reach them.

  "Jay was heating up rocks in the fire and at night he was putting them in the jeep with them. Keeping them warm," said Montes.

Searchers had started to fear the worst when the hunt stretched through two nights with temperatures as low as -16 degrees. 

The rugged, open terrain has only sporadic coverage for cell phones, too weak to put through a call, but a signal from McIntee's phone was picked up at one cell tower, helping searchers focus on a smaller area.

Members of a family that went missing are wheeled by stretcher from an ambulance into the Pershing General Hospital in Lovelock, Nev. JAMES GLOVER, Reuters
 In Lovelock, their hometown of just 2,000, 200 volunteers joined the search for the family. The relief was clear when Sheriff Richard Machado announced it was over.

"Two adults and the four children were found alive and well," said Machado.

Residents cheered as two youngest children, bundled together on the same stretcher, arrived at the local hospital.

James Glanton and three children remain in the hospital. They are being treated for mild dehydration but are doing well. 

  • John Blackstone
    John Blackstone

    From his base in San Francisco, CBS News correspondent John Blackstone covers breaking stories throughout the West. That often means he is on the scene of wildfires, earthquakes, floods, hurricanes and rumbling volcanoes. He also reports on the high-tech industry in Silicon Valley and on social and economic trends that frequently begin in the West.