Missing teen found after exhaustive search

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OKLAHOMA COUNTY - It was a two-day search, using every available resource.

Search and rescue personnel scoured east Oklahoma County all weekend.

They were frantically searching for 17-year-old Jay Cross.

Authorities said the young man had "autistic tendencies."

He wandered away from home Saturday afternoon with no cell phone, money or protection from the violent weekend weather.

"Hopefully, he got cold last night and hunkered down. He may be disoriented today because of the autistic tendencies. We need the help of the public," said Oklahoma County Sheriff John Whetsel.

And, it was the alert public who would help reunite the family.

At 1:05 a.m., Cross wondered into the City Rescue Mission.

He told authorities of a wild adventure.

He hiked through pastures, took refuge in farm sheds and remembered he'd once come here with his school.

It was 21 miles from home.

"He could have been injured by an animal, hit by a car, wandered off into the woods and starved to death," said Rescue Mission President Tom Jones. "Luckily, someone was going to see that he was safe."

The Rescue Mission gave him a cot, pillow and blanket until deputies could retrieve him.

We may never know all the details of Cross's two-day journey, but we do know this missing child investigation has a happy ending.

"We are just very grateful this turned out the way it did," Jones said.

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