Retired Florida Marine finds missing toddler after frantic 24-hour search

5/5 - (3 votes)


Photo from Hernando County Sheriff’s Office

From NY Post:

“A retired Florida Marine who miraculously found a missing toddler in dense woods Friday after hearing his faint whimpers is being hailed as the Sunshine State’s “man of the year.”

Joshua “JJ” Rowland, 2, vanished Thursday after wandering away from his home in Brooksville, setting off a frantic search involving law enforcement, canines, drones, and hundreds of volunteers.

Roy Link, 62, a retired parks department worker in Hernando County, was preparing to go fishing when he heard of JJ’s disappearance and joined the desperate effort as hopes began to fade.

“Something told me no, gotta do this.” Link later told reporters.

After 24 hours passed with no sign of the tot, Link said, he was combing through a wooded area several miles from JJ’s home and strained his ears for any unusual sounds.

“I listened good,” he said. “I heard like a whimpering kind of noise and at that point, I was like, there’s no kids here, it’s gotta be JJ. And sure enough, I went in the woods, 100 feet from where I was at.”

The frightened boy reached out to Link and began calling for his mother.

“We were just talking and both of us were getting a little emotional,” Hernando County Sheriff Al Nienhuis said alongside the local hero in a video posted to Facebook. “Little JJ climbed onto him and didn’t let go. He was so excited to see him.”

Read the whole story here.


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1 year ago

God bless Mr. Link!

1 year ago

Sometimes, you just know what you have to do, a calling that you know you are “the one” that will be of help. So thankful Mr. Link listened to this calling.

Brian Heinz
Brian Heinz
1 year ago

Unselfish devotion to others they train them right in the Marines for duty and off duty its all the same to them and once a Marine always a Marine.

1 year ago
Reply to  Brian Heinz

Thank you Brian. We fly our Flags every day from our front porch. We reply to much of what goes on today, “Molon Labe.” Husband is not only a retired Marine, but retired US Public Health Service, who worked for the Surgeon General…to service the health of our Armed Services members at home and abroad. So many people don’t know that it was est. by Washington…one of our earliest armed services…just after the Marines :). He wore the uniform of the the Public Health Service, that is often confused with the Navy. It’s one of our most unknown, but oldest, armed service.