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Fatality Reported to Grand Canyon Regional Communications Center

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Date: August 13, 2009
Contact: Shannan Marcak, 928-638-7958

Grand Canyon, Ariz. – On Thursday, August 13, at approximately 8:10 a.m., the Grand Canyon Regional Communications Center received a call from a National Park Service (NPS) river trip that a group had waved them down from the cliffs above the river near river mile 29 to report being out of water and in need of assistance.  Shortly thereafter, an additional report was received that one member of the party was deceased.

A park paramedic was dispatched by helicopter and located the party, seven hikers, approximately half-way down the Shinumo Wash Route.  The body of an additional member of their party, an 18 year-old Native American male, was located approximately one mile up the wash from the rest of the party.

The immediate needs of the stranded hikers were provided for until they could be flown by NPS helicopter to Highway 89 where they were met and assisted by Navajo Nation emergency crews.   The body of the deceased male was retrieved and also transported by NPS helicopter to Highway 89 where it was met by the Coconino County Medical Examiner.

The name of the deceased is being withheld pending positive identification and notification of next of kin.

The NPS and Navajo Nation will be conducting a joint investigation into the incident.


Did You Know?


There are approximately 1,737 known species of vascular plants, 167 species of fungi, 64 species of moss and 195 species of lichen found in Grand Canyon National Park. This variety is largely due to the 6,000 foot elevation change from the river up to the highest point on the North Rim. More...