"I've never seen anything like it. Her will to live is incredible," a sheriff's deputy says of a 25-year-old Alabama woman who spent 28 days lost in thousands of acres of forest before turning up on the side of a road in Bullock County on Saturday. Lisa Theris was in such bad shape—naked, dirty, with matted hair and covered in bug bites—that motorist Judy Garner initially mistook her for a deer, reports NBC News. Yet Garner believes that she happened upon Theris just in time. "I don't think she could have made it much longer," she says. "I gave her a hug and said, 'You poor thing. You’ve been through a lot.'" Theris—who told authorities she survived on berries, mushrooms, and water from puddles and creeks, per WTVY—was admitted to a hospital in critical condition, having lost some 50 pounds, her brother tells BuzzFeed News.
Authorities are still piecing together what happened to Theris. However, two suspects arrested weeks ago on burglary and theft charges told officers Theris was in a vehicle with them on July 18 when she learned they planned to rob a hunt camp. The suspects said Theris wanted no part and exited the vehicle. Without a phone or even shoes, she then got lost in the woods at night, a sheriff's deputy tells WSFA. Another adds "it's a miracle" she survived so long. Her brother says Theris is now out of the hospital and recovering at her parents' home in Louisville. "She's lost at least 50 pounds and her entire body is torn up," he says. "She's in severe pain, but is slowly improving." Authorities hope to interview Theris once she's recovered. (This man survived 47 days on a ledge in Nepal.)