Man found after days in wrecked car thanked rescuers, asked for 'Sonic and juice boxes

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Alex Ybarra and his team of eight Texas EquuSearch volunteers had almost called it a day on Sunday. They had nearly suspended their search for missing 32-year-old Jose Velazquez.

Ybarra said he wanted to search one more area. They were in the process of doing so when Ybarra told ABC13 a volunteer noticed a white piece of a car in the woods near FM 1488 and Highway 242 in Montgomery County.

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Alex Ybarra and his team of 8 Texas EquuSearch volunteers had almost suspended their search for Jose Velazquez.



"We stopped. We walked in to see what we could find," said Ybarra. "I could see the vehicle up ahead. It was overturned. You could see a different color. It was a grayish color. That's not something you see in the woods."

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Ybarra first talked about the incredible find Monday morning in an interview with Eyewitness News.

"As soon as I yelled for everybody to get out, I heard somebody in the background say, 'Help me! I'm over here.' I ran over there as fast as I could," said Ybarra.

Ybarra said he found Velazquez just outside of the vehicle in excruciating pain. He said Velazquez seemed like he was having a hard time breathing.

"At first, he seemed lifeless," said Ybarra. "When he looked at me, he saw my eyes. I looked at him. He was like, 'Man, thank you for finding me. How long have you been looking for me? What day is it?'"

Ybarra said Velazquez said he wanted "Sonic and juice boxes" ready for him when he got to the hospital.

Family members initially thought he went missing while headed down Highway 288 to Freeport.

"We had started family search parties on Saturday," said family member Brandy Atkinson. "There were about 15 cars going into each county and town and visiting hospitals and fire stations. We were just looking in the wrong direction."

The family is not sharing details on Velazquez's injuries, but say he is alert and doing okay.

"He is in good spirits and asking for apple juice - demanding it," Atkinson said.

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