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6-year-old boy rescued from sand dune is improving

Published: Thursday, July 18, 2013 6:12 p.m. CDT

CHICAGO – Doctors say the 6-year-old Illinois boy rescued after spending hours buried beneath an Indiana sand dune is improving at a Chicago hospital.

Dr. Rachel Wolfson of Comer Children's Hospital said Nathan Woessner's condition has been upgraded from critical to serious. He's been removed from a ventilator and he's breathing on his own. The doctor said he's recovering from sedation and he continues to respond to commands.

The Sterling boy was buried for more than three hours at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore before rescuers pulled him from 11 feet of sand on Friday. He was limp and cold, but began breathing on his way to the hospital.

Doctors have said the boy is expected to make a full neurological recovery, though he may suffer lingering lung problems from inhaling sand.

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