Rancher saves couple stranded in car for six days

Mark and Kristine Wathke

A missing couple that were last known to be visiting Yellowstone National Park have been found in there car where they were stuck for six days in the snow.

Mark and Kristine Wathke of Cornell, Wis. followed their GPS in their car that  directed them to take a route on an closed road off of  Beartooth Highway where they became stuck in the snow.

“There were no signs that told us the road was closed,” said Kristine Wathke.

Mark and Kristine piled blankets and clothing on top of them to try and keep warm as they waited for help.  They also ran their car now and then for warmth.  After a couple of days, the couple was running low on food and surviving on bread and water and losing hope they would be found and began writing goodbye letters to their family. 

Then on Monday, Troy Barnett, an owner of K Bar Z Guest Ranch in Cody, heard about the missing couple from his wife and took his snowmobile out to look for them and found them.

Troy Barnett

“I just loaded it in back of my pickup, drove up as far as I could. I probably only had to ride my snowmobile up like four miles, and then I saw the car. Come up to the car, and Mark opened the door and they were both fine, they were just excited, they were in good health, didn’t need medical attention. They were just really appreciative, just glad to see me,” said Troy.

When a WUSA9 reporter called Barnett a hero, he replied, “It is stuff we do every day out here.  If someone is in trouble we go look.”

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Jerrie Dean, who is retired from Federal Law Enforcement, is the Founder of Missing Persons of America.

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