Tuesday, October 21, 2003

Morning Report

I don't think this sounds like a "Suicide and Falling Fatality," do you? I'm thinking more murder/suicide. I'm going to search around to see if the local/area newspaper has more facts, because I definitely don't think this is the whole story.

This also reminds me that I never linked to a fascinating article on the suicide rate from the Golden Gate Bridge (via Nancy Nall). As a frequent reader of the NPS Morning Report, it immediately made me think of the same allure that our national parks have for people who want to take their own lives. I don't know if there have been any articles written about it, but there should be.

From the NPS Morning Report, October 21, 2003
Canyon De Chelly National Monument (AZ)
Suicide and Falling Fatality at Face Rock Overlook

Ranger Chris Blacksheep came upon a parked vehicle at Face Rock overlook on Spider Rock Road on the morning of Sunday, October 12th. He found the body of a woman in the passenger seat and a note with instructions to notify her daughter. The Navajo Nation Police Department and Apache County Sheriff’s Department were contacted; officers from the latter took the lead in the investigation. When the woman’s daughter was contacted, officers found that she had left her home in Maryland with her husband. A search was begun the next day in the area below the overlook, which is at the edge of a sheer, thousand-foot sandstone cliff. On Tuesday morning, the woman’s husband was found about 400 feet below the rim at the top of a talus stone. A state police helicopter arrived, but could not land in the canyon due to turbulence. The body was subsequently recovered and brought out by vehicle later that afternoon.
[Submitted by Chief Ranger's Office]