SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – A Sacramento man and woman missing since Sunday were rescued on Wednesday afternoon after the man hiked several miles in the snow in order to get cell phone reception and called 911.

missing couple UPDATE: Missing Sacramento Couple Rescued In Sierra

Mark Schroeder and Janette DeGrace were missing since Sunday but were found alive on Wednesday.

Mark Schroeder, 55, and his girlfriend, Janette DeGrace, 52, went wine-tasting on Sunday in El Dorado County but hadn’t been seen since. Schroeder hiked six miles in the snow on Wednesday to get a usable cell phone signal and was then spotted by the helicopter.

Schroeder was found near Hell Hole Reservoir in the Sierra mountains west of Lake Tahoe. The helicopter picked him up and then went to DeGrace’s location. His friends Schroeder and DeGrace were running out of food and options when he decided to set out on foot.

“He basically said his last rites to her and he said they were crying it was very emotional, that he said he was going to try and save her,” said friend Jim Jungsten, who organized the search effort by friends and family.

Mark’s Porsche got stuck in the heavy snow Sunday. They survived on very little.

“He had a half a can of peanuts and some Girl Scout cookies,” Jungsten said.

“Two cookies per meal and imagine stretching it out over three days,” friend Jason Woods added. “It’s really remarkable to see how smart he was in the situation that he ended up in.”

With a half a tank of gas, the couple turned the engine on and off over the next few day but Janette has a medical condition and was without her medication.

That’s when Mark knew he had to get help.

“He was kind of afraid to leave her alone, but it got to be such a desperate situation today that he felt like he had to take the chance to get the cell phone to work,” Jungsten said.

Mark hiked six miles across mountains. His cell phone battery nearly dead. He finally found service and called 911.

“The hard part was Mark knew that if he didn’t make it, that it meant she wasn’t going to make it either,” Woods said.

Mark’s parents thought the worst after three days and no word from their son or his girlfriend. Wednesday night brought a huge sense of relief, but that didn’t stop Mark’s father from parenting.

“I told him I’m very thankful to see you alive,” John Schroeder said he told his son. “I’m going to give you a big hug, but as soon as you are better you are going to get the biggest kick in the ass.”

Comments (11)
  1. sassafras says:

    Why is his disappearance suspicious? Has he threatened her in the past or present or perhaps kidnapped her?

  2. Cal says:

    @ sassafras – look for other news releases…this one doesn’t describe it as well…Shocker!!!!

  3. Christopher says:

    Last Saturday my daughter and her friend rented a car to enjoy for the weekend. They decided to head towards uncle Toms cabin and took the turn off towards Forresthill (they went to Oxbow before that too) They traveled 16 miles and their rental got stuck pretty bad in the snow. They ended up spending 19 hours trapped in the back country over night. There was nobody around what so ever. Luckily we have the kind of daughter that has always told us her last position and wheres she is heading. By the next morning we had not had any contact with her since Saturday morning. We were pretty upset and we decided to go find her ourselves as we knew something wasn’t right. We got up there and started our search from Georgetown on up. Along the way we stopped at every ranger station to try and find help in locating them. All stations were closed and even the 911 button at one did not work. We knocked on doors and searched but could not find anyone to help us. So we pushed on in search of our girls. We were getting pretty near Toms Cabin when they suddenly rounded the corner! They honked,we honked and we were relieved to find them! They had finally after many attempts able to get the car unstuck. We were soo happy we hugged for an eternity! The thing here is they need more Warning signs up there! Perhaps close the roads that always get un-passable! That and if not a regular check on those roads that pose a risk to inexperienced young people! Maybe someone needs to man these stations 24-7 too. I’m sure it has to do with budget cuts but that was pretty eye opening. Guess how amazed we were to hear this news! Now we think back about the cars that passed going in that direction. Were they the couple ?? passing us as we hugged our kids in relief? My other main worries as we went to look for our daughters on Sunday was the fact that there are some occasional weirdos up that way. I know the area well, and over the years have come to this conclusion. Thankfully, most people are good people but who knows these days. Well, Anyway, at least my daughter and her friend were not lost wine sippers! To all others out there! BEWARE the high country. Always let someone know where you’re heading and stick to it or let someone know! My kids and these people were lucky this time! 😀

    1. RC says:

      More warning signs? Are you kidding? Heres a warning sign…THERES SNOW ALL OVER THE ROAD! Do we really need to close every single back country road and dirt trail, spends hundreds of thousands of dollars to guard every ranger station 365 days a year? All becaus of idiot people going for a drive in the snow without chains, or 4×4? Everybody needs to take responsibility for their own actions. The weirdos are the one who take a drive to the mountains in winter unprepared! Hope they make them pay the thousands of dollars it cost to rescue these idiots!

      1. LiberalButConservative says:

        You forgot to mention that they don’t think to bring jackets because its warm in the car…

      2. ac13992 says:

        I totally agree

  4. sassafras says:

    R C there used to be road closures and warning signs. My husband and I had a similar experiance a long time ago we were rescued by a snow plow driver who even gave us some gas, we used ours up running the motor to keep turning the heater on. We relly thought we would freeze in one of our favorite locations and wrote letters to the kids. Thanks Cal I did that!

  5. mike says:

    Most winters they wouldn’t have been able to get that far by now because they stop plowing the roads that far up and wentworth springs rd out of georgetown the plow stops in quintette 11 miles up just past the bald mountain turn off and it would be a 2-3 foot ice thick skating rink for big boy toys by now all the way to ice house road and i can’t count how many times iv’e pulled idiots out because the testosterone takes over were common since used to be trying to prove how cool they are to there wife’s, girlfriends and kids.

  6. gigi says:

    I once heard a story of a girl getting stuck in the snow with her car for 10 days. she lived off of melted snow and two chocolate candy bars. Luckily she was rescued.

  7. JB says:

    Wine Tasting at Uncle Tom’s Cabin RIGHT
    Just driving to fast in his porsche and to much to drink
    Just stay home in the winter, Wait for summer so you can
    crash into a tree.

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