At 1:50 in the morning, a man offers the assistance of his heat-detecting drone in the search for a missing boy….


A boy of six years old wandered away from his home in Minnesota with his dog as the sun was setting, and the concerned Sheriff’s Department needed help.

After hours of temperatures dropping, the Sheriff’s Department was worried and needed help, and hundreds of citizens in Sherburne County responded to the call, including a man with an expensive piece of hardware.

While Steve Fines was browsing through his Twitter feed, he came across an official message that stated that a youngster had gone missing.

Because Fines lived in the area, she was aware that the surrounding area was full of “cornfields and swampy woodlands with ankle-deep water.” This was hardly the ideal environment for finding a youngster in the dark.

Because his company, Fines Imaging, possesses a heat-seeking drone, he proceeded to the location where 600 individuals had gathered to assist in the hunt for Ethan and his dog.

Fines said on Facebook just before eleven in the morning that his $30,000 thermal camera “lets me cover plenty of damp land that people can’t walk easily,” but he acknowledged that he had “no luck yet.”

According to the Washington Post, he utilizes the drone to assist farmers in finding livestock that has escaped by locating the animals’ body heat.

The temperature was around 30 degrees, and there was not a cloud in the sky in Palmer Township.

While Fines was operating the camera in the dark, he took a remarkable photograph that showed a long line of bright spots, showing all of the people out in a field getting ready to walk across in a search pattern.

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There were literally hundreds of people out there in the wet, muddy ground, in freezing temperatures at one in the morning because they wanted to help.

“The only reason I knew where to search was because volunteers on the ground discovered a footprint that guided me in the right direction,” she said. “I had no other way of knowing which way to go.” Because the Sherburne County Sheriff’s Office does such an outstanding job of coordinating, I was aware of the locations that had already been examined.

At approximately 1:50 a.m., a little more than a mile to the east of his home, the heat signatures of Ethan Haus and Remington were discovered by a drone flying overhead in a field.

Both were found lying down and shivering.

Because of his years of professional experience tracking deer and other animals, Fines was able to identify the creature as a dog.

According to Sheriff Joel Brott, Ethan had a fever but was otherwise in good health other than being chilly.

Brott described this as “the very definition of a community looking out for its own,” and he was right. It has been great to witness the outpouring of support in such a short period of time in order to come out and assist in the search for this youngster and his dog.

The drone photo taken by Fines Imaging that the Sheriff shared to his Facebook page portraying the never-ending line of volunteers moved people to expressions of thankfulness and thanks.

One of the volunteers who was in the cornfield made the following observation regarding how the drone was able to broaden the limited line of sight available to those who were on the ground:

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“You brought your talent and equipment to accomplish something for the greater good.”

You made it happen despite the fact that a state police chopper was on the scene for six hours.

Aunt Brenda Haus, who was searching for her nephew Ethan, wanted to extend a particular thank-you to Steve for his assistance in the search.

“I wish I could give a warm embrace to each and every person that was present so that I could personally thank them because it was truly incredible!”

No one, not even you, ever given up hope, and that includes you…

You will always have a special place in our thoughts because we are so appreciative that you were able to play such an important role in assisting us in bringing him back home. Once more, from the very bottom of our hearts, we thank you!

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