Teen Boy Scout recovers from rattlesnake bite

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By Tami Hoey By Tami Hoey

MESA, Ariz. -- A 13-year-old boy got bit by a rattlesnake while hiking in the Superstition Mountains.

Ethan Eliason is recovering in the hospital, and is expected to be okay. But it made for some scary moments during a scout hiking trip.

Scoutmaster John Eliason couldn't believe one of his scouts, his own son Ethan, had gotten a rattlesnake bite.

"My heart just dropped to the ground," he remembers. "I started running back as fast as I could, just thinking, okay, how are we going to deal with this."

Ethan was backpacking late at night when he felt the bite.

"I was shocked," he says. "I didn't know what had just happened and I turned around to see the rattlesnake rattling at me."

"That's when the scouts came up with a plan, starting with a little faith. "We said a lot of prayers, and sent two guys back with phones," says John.

Then, the boys put their scouting skills to the test in a real-life challenge.

"We took some stalks from a yucca plant and cut them down, and took three sleeping bags, and put those in between the two to make a stretcher," John described. "Every 10 to 100 yards and it would break."

But they made it work, and were able to safely bring Ethan off the mountain. He's recovering at Cardon Children's Hospital in Mesa.

"This is my son," said John. "I knew we couldn't give up."