A 21-month-old toddler who was found safe and well after spending two nights alone in a forest, was discovered by a journalist sent out to cover the story.

Nicola Tanturli went missing from his home near Florence, Italy, sparking a round-the-clock search involving a helicopter and about 1,000 people – including police, fire and alpine rescuers.

The media was alerted and a journalist for RAI state television was sent out to cover the story. But instead of covering the story he became part of it when he heard the toddler crying “mamma.”

Giuseppe Di Tommaso said: “I started to yell, ‘Nicola’, to understand if it could be the child. I heard ‘mamma’,” he said, as per Sky News.

“I started to repeat the word ‘mamma’, because children of that age repeat words. When I intuited that it could be Nicola, I went down into the ravine.”

He said he could see the child on the other side of the ravine in a hard-to-reach area.

The journalist said he then stopped a Carabinieri police car to help but the officers were unable to believe that the noise was coming from a child.

Carabinieri commander Danilo Ciccarelli said he climbed some 85 feet down the embankment, expecting to find a small deer.

“Instead, Nicola popped out, with his little head among the high grass. He said, ‘mamma,’ and I went towards him. He hugged me right away,” the commander said, as per Sky News.

The toddler was found with a few scratches and a small bump on his head.

“It was a tremendous joy to bring him back to his mother’s arms,” Commander Ciccarelli added.

Church bells rang out in celebration in his home town when the boy was found a mile from his home.

“The emotion was huge. I’m still shaken,” the journalist was quoted as saying by Ansa news agency.

I can’t imagine how frightened this child must have been alone in the woods for so long without his parents.

So thankful that he’s home and safe and grateful to the journalist who found him! Please share.