An eastern Iowa woman is recovering in a Cedar Rapids hospital after surviving five days, trapped on a small raft on the Wapsipinicon River. A man who lives along the river spotted 63-year-old Jeanne Schnepp of Hale waving her arm from the raft Monday afternoon.
Schnepp went missing last Wednesday during a fishing trip. Her son, Cory Schnepp, says he had been searching for his mother and likely drove past her moments before she was found. "About 10 minutes after I pulled the boat up out of the water, we got a phone call saying that they had found her about a mile down the river," Cory said.
Larry Williams, who lives in a cabin on the river, was planning to go fishing when he spotted the woman on the raft.
Cory says his mother put the raft in the water, but the current was stronger than she thought and the raft ended up caught in some brush – out of view from search boats on the river. "She could hear the boats going by and she tried yelling and waving, but she was down in such a big hole that nobody could see her from the water," Cory said.
Jeanne survived five days with just two cans of pop and a bottle of water. Her son says, other than a severe sunburn and dehydration, his mother is doing well. Cory says he was hoping for this outcome, but was prepared for something much worse after Jones County Sheriff’s deputies found her truck and personal belongings last week, but not his mother.
Jeanne Schnepp could be released from the hospital this week.