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Body of Missing Man Recovered in Yosemite National Park

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Date: August 6, 2011

Hormiz David was One of Three Hikers Witnessed Plunging Over Vernal Fall on July 19, 2011

Yosemite National Park has recovered the body of Hormiz David, a 22 year old male from Modesto, CA. David was found in the Merced River, approximately 240 feet from the base of Vernal Fall by Yosemite Rangers and Search and Rescue (SAR) personnel at approximately 1:00 p.m. yesterday, August 5, 2011. Recovery operations took approximately four and one half hours to complete and required technical rigging and swift water trained personnel.

David has been missing since July 19, 2011, when he, Ninos Yacoub, 27 year old male, of Turlock, CA, and Ramina Badal, 21 year old female, of Manteca, CA, were witnessed being swept over the 317 foot waterfall. The area where the three were swept away is signed as a dangerous area, and the group had crossed a metal guardrail placed there to keep visitors away from the fast moving water. River water levels in Yosemite continue to remain higher and colder than usual for this time of the year. Visitors are urged to exercise extreme caution when in and around waterway in the park.

Yosemite National Park Rangers and SAR personnel are continuing recovery efforts in the Merced River, below Vernal Fall, for any signs of Yacoub and Badal. The Mist Trail, leading to the top of Vernal Fall, will intermittently and temporarily be closed until recovery operations of Yacoub and Badal are completed. The trail remains closed until approximately noon today, August 6, 2011.

The search area included in the recovery effort is one of the most rugged areas of the Merced River. Yosemite Park Rangers and SAR personnel continue to exercise caution while searching along the slippery rocks and while near the high, fast moving water of the Merced River.

Did You Know?

Artwork by student

Youth from local communities show off their artistic talent through poetry and art in Yosemite National Park’s Gateway Expressions Art and Poetry Contest. Families and park staff celebrate the creative talents of these local students through a special exhibit at The Ansel Adams Gallery in the fall.