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South Carolina man dies in Colorado River

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Date: June 10, 2011
Contact: Maureen Oltrogge, 928-638-7779

Grand Canyon, Ariz. – Park Rangers from Grand Canyon National Park recovered the body of 39 year-old James J. Waring Jr., of Lexington, South Carolina yesterday following a boating accident on the Colorado River.

Mr. Waring was part of a six person private river trip that launched from Lees Ferry on Sunday, June 5 with a scheduled take out at Pearce Ferry on June 22. Early reports indicate that the group of six was traversing Hance Rapid at River Mile 76, when one of two row boats, carrying three people, flipped. One person swam to shore, a second was able to stay with the boat and eventually make it back to shore, and the third, Mr. Waring, was carried down river.

A passing commercial trip operated by Hatch River Expeditions, located Mr. Waring face-down in the water below Hance Rapid. Mr. Waring was pulled from the water and CPR was administered for 45 minutes before he was pronounced dead by a physician on scene.

Boatmen from the Hatch trip contacted the National Park Service via satellite phone shortly after pulling Mr. Waring from the water.

Mr. Waring's body was flown by National Park Service helicopter to the South Rim Helibase yesterday afternoon, then later transferred to the Coconino County Medical Examiner and transported to Flagstaff, Arizona.

An investigation will be conducted by the National Park Service. There are no additional details at this time.



Did You Know?


Each year, thousands of hikers enter the Grand Canyon on the Bright Angel Trail. They follow a route established by prehistoric people for two key reasons: water and access. Water emerges from springs at Indian Garden, and a fault creates a break in the cliffs, providing access to the springs.