News Release

Remains of 2015 Yellowstone River drowning victim found and identified

field of wildflowers with mountains in background
Wildflowers on Beartooth Pass

NPS / Jacob W. Frank

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News Release Date: August 1, 2019

Contact: Morgan Warthin, (307) 344-2015

MAMMOTH HOT SPRINGS, WY - The remains of Feiyang “Isaac” Xiang, a 21-year-old male from China who likely drowned in 2015, have been found and positively identified. Xiang, a seasonal concessionaire employee in Yellowstone, was last seen being swept down the Yellowstone River in the northern section of the park on Thursday, July 23, 2015. A large and extensive search for Xiang ensued aided by several dog teams, dozens of ground searchers, and helicopter teams. Search efforts did not turn up any sign of Xiang.

In February 2018, staff discovered human bones in the vicinity of the 2015 drowning site. Law enforcement officers collected the remains and sent them to the University of North Texas Center for Human Identification for DNA testing. In June 2019, the park received confirmation that the remains were of Xiang.
 
Yellowstone National Park law enforcement officers have stayed in touch with Xiang’s family since the incident. When the remains were positively identified, staff notified the family. In July 2019, Xiang’s family returned to the park and collected his remains. They have since returned to China.   

Yellowstone National Park worked with many agencies and individuals during the search and investigation and would like to thank all of them. 

For additional information about this unfortunate incident, read the previous press releases:



Last updated: August 1, 2019

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Yellowstone National Park, WY 82190-0168

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307-344-7381

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