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Re: Grand Canyon: Search Underway For Missing Man

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avatar Grand Canyon: Search Underway For Missing Man
September 08, 2009 12:06PM
Grand Canyon National Park (AZ)
Search Underway For Missing Man

Rangers are searching the Grandview-Hance area for a man who has been missing since at least last Friday. At approximately 8:30 a.m. on Saturday, September 5th, the park received word that a man reported missing to the Coconino County Sherriff’s Office might be in the Grand Canyon. The sheriff’s office received the initial report on the evening of September 4th – based on evidence found during their investigations, they determined that 43-year-old Andrew Brunelli of North Carolina might have gone hiking in the park. Upon receiving the report, rangers began searching parking areas near major trailheads on the South Rim. A short time later, a blue Hyundai Accent that Brunelli had rented was found in the Grandview Point parking lot. Aerial searches of the primary trails, routes and drainages in the area were begun, and three ground search teams were inserted into the area to begin searching the primary trails. Brunelli’s specific itinerary is unfortunately not known. Park investigators are therefore seeking the assistance of anyone who has visited the Grand Canyon within the last week and might have seen him. Andrew Brunelli is described as being 5 feet 10 inches tall, weighing 200 pounds, with short medium-brown hair and grey-blue eyes. He may or may not be unshaven at this time. Brunelli’s last known location was the Grand Canyon Inn in Valle, Arizona, where he was last seen by hotel staff on August 30th. Anyone who may have seen Brunelli since that time is asked to call the Grand Canyon Regional Communications Center at 928-638-7805.
avatar Re: Grand Canyon: Search Underway For Missing Man
September 09, 2009 01:44PM
Grand Canyon National Park (AZ)
Search For Missing Man Continues

The search continues for 43-year-old Andrew Brunelli of Clayton, North Carolina, who was last seen on August 31st as he entered Grand Canyon National Park. The search for Brunelli began on September 4th when the Coconino County Sherriff’s Office received a report that he had not checked out of his hotel in Valle, Arizona, and that his things were still in the room. On September 5th, the sheriff’s office informed the National Park Service that their investigations indicated that Brunelli planned to hike in the Grand Canyon while he was in the area. A short time later, a blue Hyundai Accent rented in his name was found in the Grandview Point parking area on the South Rim of the park. Aerial and ground search efforts began in the Grandview-Hance area shortly thereafter. Monday’s search operations included aerial search operations and ground teams searching trails, routes and drainages that can be reached from the Grandview and other connecting trails. In addition, two dog teams searched rim areas near the trailhead where vegetation and steep terrain inhibit human searchers, and technical rope/canyoneering teams began searching steep narrow drainages where a hiker could have become cliffed out. Yesterday, aerial operations were scaled back as the aerial search zone has now been thoroughly covered. Ground teams continued to search drainages and areas with dense vegetation. Two dog teams were inserted into the Horseshoe Mesa area, a popular day hike destination, and the technical rope crews continued to search steep drainages and cliff areas. In order to gain a better understanding of Brunelli’s plans while he was in the park, investigators have been asking the public to call in if they have any information on his itinerary or if they think they have seen him within the last eight days. Brunelli is described as 5 feet 10 inches tall, weighing 200 pounds, with short medium-brown hair and grey-blue eyes. He may or may not be unshaven at this time. Anyone who may have seen Andrew Brunelli since August 31st is asked to contact the Grand Canyon Regional Communications Center at 928-638-7805. The National Park Service is conducting an investigation into this incident and is working closely with the Coconino County Sherriff’s Office on the investigation and on search and rescue efforts.
avatar Grand Canyon: Body Of Missing Man Believed Found
September 10, 2009 02:32PM
Grand Canyon National Park (AZ)
Body Of Missing Man Believed Found

The body of a lone male was spotted from the park’s helicopter late yesterday morning. It’s believed to be that of 43-year-old Andrew Brunelli of Clayton, North Carolina, who searchers have been looking for since last weekend. It was outside the initial search zone, which had been based on his past history of short to medium day hikes in the area and the lack of a backcountry permit indicating a longer itinerary. Investigators also determined that Brunelli had not shared a specific itinerary with anyone in his immediate family and that he had not been seen since approximately 5:00 a.m. on August 31st. By yesterday morning, all of the high-probability areas within the initial search zone had been searched and in many cases re-searched by ground crews, dog teams and technical rope/canyoneering teams. As a result, ground search crews had begun to scale back operations in the area. At the same time, continuing efforts by investigators led to a co-worker who believed that Brunelli’s plans might have been a great deal more extensive than his past history in the park had indicated. This led search and rescue personnel to expand their search zone. With fewer ground personnel to support, the park’s helicopter was able to engage in aerial search operations beyond the original search zone. Helicopter crew members spotted the body in a drainage north of the Tonto Trail and approximately two miles east of the South Kaibab Trail in the vicinity of Pattie Butte. The body was retrieved by helicopter via long-line operation and taken to the South Rim, where it was transferred to the Coconino County medical examiner. The park has extended its thanks to the local and national media and local communities that took an interest in this story and provided assistance in reaching out to the public for information about Brunelli. An investigation is underway.
avatar Re: Grand Canyon: Search Underway For Missing Man
September 10, 2009 09:50PM
There is such a small window of survival in Grand Canyon.
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