This is a rush transcript from "On the Record," October 15, 2009. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
SHANNON BREAM, FOX NEWS GUEST HOST: I'm Shannon Bream, in tonight for Greta Van Susteren. And he is alive! The country was glued to our TVs today, watching as a runaway balloon believed to be then carrying 6-year-old Falcon Heene, flew out of control all over the skies of Colorado.
Well, that balloon eventually landed. You saw it here on Fox. And the boy was nowhere to be found. Well, an urgent search was then on. After hours of frantic searching, Falcon was found alive hiding in a box in his garage attic.
The Heene family a short time ago, including little Falcon.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RICHARD HEENE, FATHER: We were working on an experimental craft. I call it the 3D-LAV, a low altitude-vehicle for people to pull out of their garages and hover over traffic for about 50 to 100 feet. It's in the very early stages of the invention. But this little guy decided to kept (ph) going inside the utility compartment underneath. So anyway, this little guy got inside of it. I thought he did, anyway. According to Brad, Brad said he saw it and he said he videotaped it. And we watched it back (ph), and sure enough, he got in. But obviously, he got out. So we don't know - - he says he was hiding in the attic and -- because I yelled at him, and I'm really sorry I yelled at him.
MAYUMI HEENE, MOTHER: (INAUDIBLE)
RICHARD HEENE: Scared the heck out of us.
FALCON HEENE, 6 YEARS OLD: I was in the attic and he scared me because he yelled at me. That's why I went in the attic. I heard (INAUDIBLE) didn't want to come out very soon or else he'll yell at me and I'd probably get in trouble.
RICHARD HEENE: I really, really want to thank the local police department, Larimer County sheriff and all their efforts. You guys are great. I want to thank the news helicopters that were helping out the search. I heard from the police department they were out there first.
MAYUMI HEENE: Thank you so much.
RICHARD HEENE: Yes. They got reports back of what was going on, so that kept us informed.
QUESTION: (INAUDIBLE) grounded?
RICHARD HEENE: No. No, we...
MAYUMI HEENE: We do not (INAUDIBLE)
RICHARD HEENE: Yes, we don't -- we don't ground our children, but we're going to talk to them.
How did it feel to see my son again? This is a relief. Oh, we're going to watch him a lot closer.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BREAM: Well, Fox's Alicia Acuna is live at the Heene home where Falcon was found alive. Alicia, how are things there tonight?
ALICIA ACUNA, FOX CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Shannon. Well, things are going very well. In fact, the family is in the home behind me right now. They're all together, and they're no doubt going over the events of the day over and over again.
And one thing we didn't hear was the emotion from Falcon's mother. She told one of our crews here that when she realized what was going on -- she was sitting on the couch, waiting and waiting and worrying and worrying, and then all of a sudden, her son came to her. And it took her a second to realize. And she said, Oh, my gosh. It's Falcon. And she said her entire day just turned around completely because for the whole two hours that they thought he could have been up in the balloon or missing somewhere all in the landscape of Colorado, they didn't know where he was. And there he was in the house alone.
Now, I can tell you some details about the search that went under way because it was an extensive search for this little boy. A Kiowa helicopter was launched out of Buckley Air Force Base. A Black Hawk helicopter was up in the air. That was a cost of $14,500. The sheriff's departments in two to three different counties became involved in this entire search. And fortunately, it all came to a very good end.
And it looks to me like -- oh, it looks like the little boy is actually coming back. We're going to push off just a little bit. And he is coming out to talk to -- it looks like a -- one media agency out here.
But they've been in front of the cameras -- I'm going to go ahead and push back. They've been in front of the cameras this afternoon -- and he has come out, it looks like, to talk a little bit. Yes. He has. He's not shy from the cameras. And as we do know, Shannon, his family was part of ABC's "Wife Swap," and the family is very used to being in front of the cameras. And as we saw at the conclusion of today's events, they did come out and talk to he cameras.
And I can tell you one reporter did come out and ask little Falcon, Hey, did you know how worried everybody was? And he just kind of shrugged his shoulders and went, No." He had no idea, no idea what was going on during this entire time that he was inside the attic -- Shannon.
BREAM: Well, we're certainly glad it had a happy ending. Alicia, thank you.
And here's how this incredible story unfolded and captured the attention of the entire world.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This is a potentially very dangerous situation for this little child, and imagine what his family is going through right now.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: His parents contacted, apparently, a local TV station there and authorities there in Fort Collins to let them know right away so that they could try to get some visual on this child.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This thing is moving at a very fast clip, and they are also very concerned about the temperatures as this gets higher and higher.
SHEPARD SMITH, FOX NEWS ANCHOR: A 6-year old boy climbed into a homemade balloon aircraft and floated away. A balloon that looks like a spacecraft airborne and on the move at what locals call approximately 25 miles an hour. And right now, they have no idea how to get the little boy and the balloon down.
Martha, the mom that she is, holding out hope that what this boy did was actually let the balloon ago and he's all embarrassed because he let the balloon go, and maybe he's hiding somewhere. I mean, that would be a miracle. That -- I mean, that has to be everybody's prayer at this moment, that the little boy is not in there, despite the fact that we think he is.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He went from here to here, and now he could be here.
SMITH: Look at this! Would you look at this! The hope- oh, my goodness! And now the balloon is on the ground. The man has grabbed the guy wire. What we hope is we're about to see a little kid walk out of there, looking around, going, What in the world? Where am I? What just happened? Where is my mommy?
Actually, a better case would be that he's hiding under -- you know, in the basement back at the house, and they just think that he got up in that balloon, but he never did, but -- you know -- you know where we are right now? It's time for a little honesty. We don't know. We don't know. We know the balloon is down and we know there's nobody in it. We know these people chased it, and they were hoping for a rescue and a little 6- year-old scared boy would pop out, and it didn't happen.
BREAM: And then, of course, the good news, Falcon was found alive and well. Joining us now by phone is Larimer County sheriff Jim Alderden. Sheriff, thank you for your time tonight. We know it's been a very crazy, hectic day. I want to start up by asking you how you reacted when you found out Falcon was safe.
SHERIFF JIM ALDERDEN, LARIMER COUNTY, COLORADO (Via telephone): Boy, it's been a roller-coaster ride for the entire agency, but -- yes, when this thing started, all I could picture is a couple other incidents that we've had here in our county that didn't end as well and certainly expected the worst. And when the little boy walked in and I got the page that he was fine -- just a sense of joy.
BREAM: And Sheriff, have you ever had anything like this? It's such an unusual case. How do you even begin to try to tackle this?
ALDERDEN: No, this is a first, having an escaped hot air balloon and -- and you know, clearly, we were trying to figure out how we were going to track it, how we were going to find it, and if we find it, how were we going to get it down safely. You know, we were consulting with different agencies, including military personnel as far as using their helicopters and their expertise to see how we might be able to tackle this problem. But it certainly isn't one that we ever contemplated.
BREAM: Well, now that the dust has settled and we know that Falcon is OK, he's safe with his family, he may get into a little bit of trouble with Mom and Dad. They said there's going to be a talking-to. But what about Mom and Dad? Any kind of pushback for them, having this unusual apparatus out there floating around?
ALDERDEN: Nothing from a law enforcement perspective at this point. Certainly, there's no criminal conduct that we're aware of, and I don't know if there'd be any sort of zoning regulations regarding having anything like this in your back yard, but I'm not aware of any. I don't anticipate that there'd be any criminal charges filed. And certainly, the other question that comes up is, Do we intend to charge for the cost of the search, and that's not our practice.
BREAM: OK. Can you give me an idea about the amount of personnel you had mobilized today and the folks that were hoping for this happy ending?
ALDERDEN: You know, I really can't give you a good number. I'm estimating on the Larimer County side, between ourselves and the fire department and our search and rescue people and everybody that was called in and working on this, probably 60 to 80 people in the Larimer County side. And then you had Weld (ph) County and Adams (ph) County, where the balloon actually touched down. So I couldn't even begin to estimate how many people. Clearly, a hundred or more, I would say.
BREAM: And Sheriff, we know the family was extremely grateful and thanked all those workers. So we hope that all of them, including you, get a chance to now go put your foot -- feet up for the night and relax and rejoice in the happy ending. Sheriff, thank you.
ALDERDEN: You're welcome. Thank you.
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