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Horseman Dies In Riding Accident

Haleakala National Park

National Park News

On Monday, May 25th, long-time Maui resident Edward Wilson, 65, was killed in an accident on the Halemau'u Trail. Wilson and his horse fell approximately 100 feet from the switchbacked trail while en route to a backcountry cabin. Wilson's horse was also killed in the fall. Visitors called 911 after members of Wilson's party saw him lying unresponsive on a small ledge. Backcountry rangers on patrol were diverted to the area and others hiked in from the frontcountry. Maui Fire Department's Air Rescue One and Engine 13 also responded, but firefighters were unable to reach the victim by helicopter due to the weather. One visitor from the party was flown out of the backcountry after she hurt her ankle trying to reach Wilson. Rangers Dave Hahn and Peter Reitchel were able to traverse steep scree slopes and several cliff faces and confirm that Wilson was dead. They were unable to recover the body that day due to its location and the onset of darkness. Rangers remained overnight in the area and assisted Maui Fire Department with the recovery of Wilson at first light the next day. Firefighters reached the body via helicopter short haul and were able to extract Wilson and several of his personal effects.


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