Cave rescuers: 'It was an amazing experience'

David Shipman has been released from the hospital following a 24-hour rescue effort Friday.
Shipman, age 20, disappeared after rappelling into a cave in the Huachuca Mountains. Two friends quickly called for help.
Nearly a dozen agencies throughout Southern Arizona assisted in the rescue sending in an estimated 170 people.
Among the rescuers, two paramedics from the Fry Fire Department in Sierra Vista. Captain Mike Palestro and Mike Short were two of the first people to make contact with the Duke University student.
Short said, "He could understand, but he would squeeze his hand for yes or no to get answers from him. That's how it was for the first couple of hours until he got rest and was able to talk to us."
Palestro said they made their way into the cave at 12:30 a.m. and emerged with the injured caver 16 hours later,
"He helped us because he realized that we couldn't do it without his help, especially in some parts, trying to get him back through the small hole he had fallen through," Palestro said.
Shipman was found lying in a 20 x 20 ft. cavity. Paramedics say he suffered from dehydration and hypothermia.
Palestro considers it a miracle that the caver did not suffer greater injury after falling an estimated 40-to=50 feet.
Lee Ryan, a member of the Southern Arizona Rescue Association, also assisted in the rescue.
"We probably, in the end, had over 100 people working on the site. The truth is, we needed every single one of them," Ryan said.
The rescue effort took a total of 24 hours.

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