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Climber killed by bee stings hanging from cliff in Santa Ritas
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majid_sabet


May 7, 2013, 8:31 PM
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Climber killed by bee stings hanging from cliff in Santa Ritas
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http://azstarnet.com/...b4-3d24cd72a070.html


A Tucson man was found dead Monday evening hanging in his rappelling gear from a cliff on Mount Hopkins south of Tucson.

He had been attacked by bees and suffered hundreds of stings, but investigators don't know if that caused his death.

Steven Wallace Johnson, 55, was an experienced hiker and climber who went to rappel on Friday, said Lt. Raoul Rodriguez of the Santa Cruz County Sheriff's Department.

One preliminary theory is that Johnson disturbed the bees while hammering his spike into the cliff, Rodriguez said.

Johnson's dog, which also was attacked by bees, was found dead on top of the ridge where Johnson was rappelling, Rodriguez said.

When Johnson did not show up to work Monday, co-workers reported him missing to Tucson police. Authorities were told that he planned to hike in the Santa Ritas and at other sites in Santa Cruz County.

Deputies of the Santa Cruz County Sheriff's Department and its search and rescue unit found his body.

The Pima County Medical Examiner's Office will conduct an autopsy to determine his cause of death.


(This post was edited by majid_sabet on May 8, 2013, 8:52 AM)


shimanilami


May 7, 2013, 11:00 PM
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Re: [majid_sabet] rock climber found hanging from cliff in Santa Ritas [In reply to]
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It's great to hear from you again, Majid!


Gmburns2000


May 8, 2013, 7:01 AM
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Re: [majid_sabet] rock climber found hanging from cliff in Santa Ritas [In reply to]
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majid_sabet wrote:
http://www.kvoa.com/...ff-in-santa-ritas/#_

Deputies dispatched a search and rescue team and found the man hanging dead from his climbing gear on a cliff, Rodriguez said.


Wow, that sucks. Kind of a strange situation based on that article. Condolences to friends and family.


sonso45


May 8, 2013, 9:31 AM
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Re: [Gmburns2000] rock climber found hanging from cliff in Santa Ritas [In reply to]
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RIP Steve, my condolences to his family. He was a great guy and longtime climber from Southern AZ. Sad news.


potreroed


May 8, 2013, 10:25 AM
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Re: [majid_sabet] Climber killed by bee stings hanging from cliff in Santa Ritas [In reply to]
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Sad news. Sincere condolences to his family and friends.

One of the reasons I quit soloing was a similar incident where I was attacked by a large swarm of yellowjackets while negotiating the crux section of a route I was soloing onsight.


gblauer
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May 8, 2013, 6:04 PM
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Re: [potreroed] Climber killed by bee stings hanging from cliff in Santa Ritas [In reply to]
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My condolences


Partner oldsalt


May 9, 2013, 4:46 AM
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Re: [potreroed] Climber killed by bee stings hanging from cliff in Santa Ritas [In reply to]
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potreroed wrote:
Sad news. Sincere condolences to his family and friends.

One of the reasons I quit soloing was a similar incident where I was attacked by a large swarm of yellowjackets while negotiating the crux section of a route I was soloing onsight.

I wish to add my condolences, as well.

I climbed (top rope) part-way past a yellow jacket nest in a crack at Sandrock. They rushed out en mass and I instinctively bailed. My belayer was alert, and even began lowering me immediately before she even knew why I had jumped.

This incident strikes me hard, as I love to solo and we (soloists) tend to think that we are bulletproof...or else we wouldn't do it, would we?


majid_sabet


May 9, 2013, 9:13 AM
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Re: [oldsalt] Climber killed by bee stings hanging from cliff in Santa Ritas [In reply to]
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This is something we never pay attention to but should be well documented in topos and guides as potential hazards


milesenoell


May 9, 2013, 11:37 AM
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Re: [majid_sabet] Climber killed by bee stings hanging from cliff in Santa Ritas [In reply to]
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The bees killed the dog, too?! Those sound like some nasty bees.


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