'Excited' Six-Year-Old Reunited with Teddy Bear One Year After Losing the Toy in National Park
A six-year-old girl was just reunited with her teddy bear after losing the stuffed animal a year ago in Montana's Glacier National Park.
Naomi Pascal lost Teddy along the park's Hidden Lake Trail in October 2020, according to an Oct. 7 Glacier National Park Facebook post. Naomi, who was adopted from Ethiopia in 2016, first received the teddy bear from her parents, Ben and Addie Pascal, before her adoption, according to the Associated Press.
Since she was gifted Teddy, Naomi had taken him everywhere, including on family trips to countries all over the world, the outlet reported.
By the time the family realized they did not have Teddy during that Montana trip last fall, it was too late to go back and search for him — because of snowy weather, parts of the park were closed. In hopes of tracking down Naomi's furry pal, Pascal family friend Terri Hayden reported the bear missing to park officials, AP reports.
Eventually, the "small, sopping wet teddy bear" was found "buried in the snow" by Ranger Tom Mazzarisi while he was doing some postseason clean-up in the park, according to the Glacier National Park Facebook post.
While rangers would have typically disposed of the bear, Mazzarisi was compelled to keep it.
"Bears are my passion. I just didn't have the heart to throw it away. There was something special about this teddy bear, so I adopted him and named him Ceasar," he said, per the park's Facebook post.
The ranger took the teddy bear in and cleaned him up, later positioning the toy on the dash of his patrol truck. It was there that Hayden spotted Teddy on a return trip to Glacier National Park with friends in September, about a year after he first went missing. After seeing the bear in Mazzarisi's car, she sent a photo to Addie, who confirmed it was her daughter's lost toy, according to the AP.
"I run up to these rangers and I'm hyperventilating," Hayden told the AP. "And I'm going, 'There's a truck down at the trailhead and there's a bear sitting on the dashboard.' "
Hayden was able to take the bear back with her, and she later shipped it to Naomi's home in Wyoming.
"I felt excited because I didn't know I was gonna ever see him again," Naomi told CBS News.