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Contact: John Kelly, 207-288-8703
Mark Simon, 68, of Glen Ridge, New Jersey, fell to his death from a bluff between Sand Beach and Thunder Hole in Acadia National Park on Monday, June 6. Mr. Simon was a summer resident of Southwest Harbor, Maine.
At approximately 7 pm, Mr. Simon and his wife parked along the Park Loop Road so he could photograph the sunset from a location off the Ocean Path across from Old Soaker. Mr. Simon's wife waited for him in their vehicle and became concerned about his situation once the sun had set. At approximately 9:30 pm, his wife waved down a passing park ranger vehicle, which was on routine patrol.
Park rangers located Mr. Simon's backpack at the top of a bluff and discovered that he had fallen approximately 40 feet to the edge of the water below. Park rangers were not able to reach him due to the steep terrain and attempted to make verbal contact, but he was unresponsive. The National Park Service requested assistance from the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) and Mount Desert Island Search and Rescue at approximately 10 pm, while park rangers maintained visual contact of Mr. Simon.
The USCG responded with two boats as the rising tide carried Mr. Simon off shore into Newport Cove. The USCG located Mr. Simon within 50 yards of the shore at approximately 11:30 pm, but he remained unresponsive. The USCG transported his body to the Bar Harbor town pier where the boat met park rangers and paramedics from the Bar Harbor Fire Department. Jordan Fernald Funeral Home transported his body to the Maine Office of the Chief Medical Examiner, which will conduct an autopsy to determine the cause of death.While the fall appears accidental, the National Park Service is investigating the circumstances.