Family dies in Mariposa county due to possible mineshaft gasses

firebird

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https://www.cnn.com/2021/08/19/us/yosemite-family-death-trnd/index.html

Be careful out there guys. I've prospected in that area before and I swear I could smell something unpleasant in the water in the creeks there like gas. Authorities are still unsure what killed the family, no obvious signs of death/wounds and best theory so far is either mineshaft gasses from the old mines in the area or algae bloom in the creeks.
 
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GoDeep

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If anyone's truly feels that it was "investigator ego" or some sort of coverup or intellectual laziness, in many states where no criminal charges are being brought, the autopsy reports, case file and toxicology reports can be obtained through a freedom of information request.

Being there were multiple investigators spanning multiple disciplines including forensic computer (for phone, computer), biologists (for water source testing), mining (for mining gas testing), Toxicologists/hematologist(blood work), pathologist/coroner (autopsy), crime scene processors, witnesses, and homicide investigators, a wealth of information can be obtained and who knows, it wouldn't be the first time an outsider stumbled upon a clue they overlooked.
 
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GoDeep

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that's the reason I won't rule out planned suicide.
no way on earth a baby would enjoy a trip like that.
or be a fun guest.

You won't rule out suicide because they brought their baby with? I've spent my entire life hiking, from up Mount Rainer, to the depths of the Grand Canyon, with child in tow and can testify to having seen hundreds, if not thousands, of families, including myself, backpacking their young kids in and out of some treacherous areas. It is not an uncommon site on the trail in the least and even the youngest of them actually acclimate quite well to it and aren't much trouble. My kids and most kids i see on the trail are much better behaved and pleasant to be around then some of the kids i see in a run to walmart! Even the youngest of kids adapt to the expectations of their parents.
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GoDeep

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Speaking of kids, here's my two., Ella and Kevin. I've been bringing them on far away adventures since they were in diapers. I hope it makes them better citizens of this great country of ours!

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grand2.jpg
 
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jeff of pa

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I think the dog would have found water,
if there was any.
No I don't think Dogs have Magical Sniffers.
I Just think it would have traveled a wider circumference
 

GoDeep

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I think the dog would have found water,
if there was any.
No I don't think Dogs have Magical Sniffers.
I Just think it would have traveled a wider circumference
It's a question i had too at the beginning of this thread before any findings were released.

It's my understanding dogs do die quite regularly of hyperthermia, especially when left in hot cars but outside too as the link below lists cases and causes. Anytime their core temperature reaches above 106f they are in danger of dying.

The report says it reached 107F and 109F on the days while there were out and where the dog and owner were found, no water source was nearby and no shade. With the owners incapacitated and unable to provide water for the dog, if there ever was a perfect scenario for a dog to die of hyperthermia, this was it! I don't think it strains credulity that was the cause of death of the pet too.

I would think the breed of dog would play a roll too. Was it a long haired, short haired, cold or warm "breed" small or large dog?



 

Tesorodeoro

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"Mr Gerrish was found in a seated position on a steep dirt path section of the switchbacks leading back to where their truck was parked, with his daughter and dog next to him. The baby was in a backpack carrier. Ms Chung was found slightly further up the path. Mr Gerrish was wearing a short-sleeved shirt, Ms Chung was wearing a tank-top, and both were wearing shorts."

This is very suspicious for people who are supposed to have died of heat exhaustion and dehydration. It certainly doesn't fit the profile we so often see in the desert southwest.

I have volunteered for several desert rescue organizations over the years. It's well known that people suffering from heat stroke/dehydration are easy to find - all you have to do is follow the line of discarded clothing. In virtually every case the victims become disorientated, begin wandering in different directions and remove their clothes as they wander. Bodies of those that have succumbed are scattered and most often nude. Rarely are victims that have traveled as a group found together. Add in the dog and you've got a fairy tale in the making.

I think they don't know how they died. I suspect there has been a lot of pressure to produce a result the public can accept and move on.
Not all mysteries get solved.
 

Tesorodeoro

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You won't rule out suicide because they brought their baby with? I've spent my entire life hiking, from up Mount Rainer, to the depths of the Grand Canyon, with child in tow and can testify to having seen hundreds, if not thousands, of families, including myself, backpacking their young kids in and out of some treacherous areas. It is not an uncommon site on the trail in the least and even the youngest of them actually acclimate quite well to it and aren't much trouble. My kids and most kids i see on the trail are much better behaved and pleasant to be around then some of the kids i see in a run to walmart! Even the youngest of kids adapt to the expectations of their parents. View attachment 1986631 View attachment 1986632 View attachment 1986633
I was packed around in a backpack before they had those fancy baby carriers. I think my parents took my older brother to a mtn. lake when he was a couple days old. My dad didn’t take me up there on an unknown hike with 109 deg. Temps.
 

GoDeep

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Not all mysteries get solved.
Fortunately, this one was solved and there was no mystery, other then the one the main stream media was pushing.

Don't forget, it was the media, like the media always does, who sensationalized and promoted a mystery before the facts were in. Toxicology, autopsy, forensic and circumstantial evidence all point to hyperthermia.

Folks, anyone who frequents the outdoors knows this is not unusual at all, it is literally an everyday occurrence for those venturing out into 100F regions. Approximately 400 people die of heat stroke each year in the USA.

Also, as a LE officer of 11 years, i can tell you this: when we respond to a potential crime scene, we know much more then is reported to the media. Often times too, just being at the scene we can reasonably put together the cause of death or id the prime suspect, but we don't release that to the media, nor is it our job to ascertain the cause of death, that is determined by the medical examiner.

Despite the media sensationalizing it, i'll bet my next of kin, that the rangers and officers responding to the scene knew all along it was likely hyperthermia, but a thorough job requires looking at other possibilities like they did in this case, lightening, toxic algae, mine gasses etc. It actually was a quite thorough investigation with what little information we as civilians have access too and more can be gained if anyone wants to get off their butt and put in a freedom of information request.
 

jeff of pa

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sorry ! no personal judgements intended.
I just personally find it hard to understand taking a baby into unforgiving
places for more then a quick look because you didn't wanna leave it in the car.
not like a baby is gonna discuss it with ya
 
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Red-Coat

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I would think the breed of dog would play a roll too. Was it a long haired, short haired, cold or warm "breed" small or large dog?

See my summary in post #94. The dog was an eight-year-old Australian shepherd-akita mix.

Older dogs are more prone to hyperthermia and some breeds are more vulnerable than others, particularly those with thick, heavy coats or short flat faces. Akitas are in the top five vulnerable breeds because their thick fur and double coat causes them difficulty in the heat. They’re much more suited to cool climates.
 

Tesorodeoro

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Fortunately, this one was solved and there was no mystery, other then the one the main stream media was pushing.

Don't forget, it was the media, like the media always does, who sensationalized and promoted a mystery before the facts were in. Toxicology, autopsy, forensic and circumstantial evidence all point to hyperthermia.

Folks, anyone who frequents the outdoors knows this is not unusual at all, it is literally an everyday occurrence for those venturing out into 100F regions. Approximately 400 people die of heat stroke each year in the USA.

Also, as a LE officer of 11 years, i can tell you this: when we respond to a potential crime scene, we know much more then is reported to the media. Often times too, just being at the scene we can reasonably put together the cause of death or id the prime suspect, but we don't release that to the media, nor is it our job to ascertain the cause of death, that is determined by the medical examiner.

Despite the media sensationalizing it, i'll bet my next of kin, that the rangers and officers responding to the scene knew all along it was likely hyperthermia, but a thorough job requires looking at other possibilities like they did in this case, lightening, toxic algae, mine gasses etc. It actually was a quite thorough investigation with what little information we as civilians have access too and more can be gained if anyone wants to get off their butt and put in a freedom of information request.
The reason they didn’t wander off searching for water in a delirious manner, or shed their clothing is a mystery that may never be solved. You should really stop looking for a debate where there is none to begin with.
 

GoDeep

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I have volunteered for several desert rescue organizations over the years. It's well known that people suffering from heat stroke/dehydration are easy to find - all you have to do is follow the line of discarded clothing. In virtually every case the victims become disorientated, begin wandering in different directions and remove their clothes as they wander. Bodies of those that have succumbed are scattered and most often nude. Rarely are victims that have traveled as a group found together. Add in the dog and you've got a fairy tale in the making.
I respect and appreciate your observations, but let me contrast it with mine as they vary from your experiences. It is not uncommon for those suffering from both hyperthermia and hypothermia to still be fully clothed and often they look like they just sat down and literally died on the spot, no struggle, no fight, no delusion, just died almost what looks like peacefully.

I once made the mistake of placing my gloved hand on their flesh that had been rotting in the sun for about two days near the lower back just above the buttocks, and i kid you not, i couldn't get that smell off for days. It was nauseating and that sense still gets triggered to this day.
 

GoDeep

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See my summary in post #94. The dog was an eight-year-old Australian shepherd-akita mix.

Older dogs are more prone to hyperthermia and some breeds are more vulnerable than others, particularly those with thick, heavy coats or short flat faces. Akitas are in the top five vulnerable breeds because their thick fur and double coat causes them difficulty in the heat. They’re much more suited to cool climates.
Don't you go throwing facts out there....
 

GoDeep

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The reason they didn’t wander off searching for water in a delirious manner, or shed their clothing is a mystery that may never be solved. You should really stop looking for a debate where there is none to begin with.
Not a mystery. I'm not sure how it got started that they all shed their clothes and run around like mad men before they die, (Hollywood perhaps?) but it's mostly untrue. While it's true that their have been some cases (especially from hypothermia) were they shed their cloths and wander off never to be seen, the large majority of people found who succumb to the elements are found intact and clothed and either right at their camp or near the trail. That be the facts.

Edit: Another thing regarding those who succumb to heat stroke, it isn't uncommon to find them with water still in their canteen! Studies have shown that when you start to suffer from heat exhaustion or heat stroke, you lose your thirst and it's a snowball effect as you lose your ability to tell if you are overheated or thirsty. When i was in the Army, they would actually force us to drink water on a regular basis when we were out in the field, whether we felt thirsty or not!
 
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GoDeep

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Not Hollywood unfortunately. Years of real life experience in the desert.

523 heat related deaths last year alone in Arizona.
And most all were found clothed, not running around buck naked and delirious leaving a trail of clothes in their wake like bread crumbs leading searches to their corpse. So yes, very much Hollywood, as it's the exception not the rule.

You previously mentioned you volunteered from some searches, and though you didn't specifically say you found any corpses, it was written to make us believe you had found corpse with a trail of scattered clothes. What were the names of those missing persons you volunteered to search for, i'd like to research them more?

Edit: If you want a great case study in how people die in arid regions, the grand canyon is a great study. Every year several die of hyperthermia (and some of hypothermia), and though some wander off, most are found right smack dead on or just off the trail, clothed, with their possessions which is consistent with how this couple was found. The heat overtakes them, they become disoriented and they sit down to "rest" and that's all she wrote. In I believe around 2014 (i may be off a year, you should be able to google it) my son and I were making our annual hike in the Grand Canyon and we came across an elderly gentlemen sitting along the trail, about 60 years old and he appeared very distressed and disoriented. I being former LE and a certified first responder, stopped to help him until Rangers arrived. He was airlifted out of there and died shortly thereafter of heat stroke. He still had all his clothes on, including his pack when we found him and that's the case for most. Most hypo and hyperthermia victims are found right were they last sat down to "rest", right on the trail, right at their camp etc. It's the wander off, strip naked stories that stir the imagination and grab the headlines, but they are the exception, not the rule.

Edit 2: And even throwing more cold water on the "it can't be hyperthermia when they weren't found running around buck naked and half delirious leaving a trail of breadcrumbs before they die" theory, a lot of hypothermia victims aren't even dead when they are found, let alone running around naked and delirious, but it's too late, they die at the hospital hours or days later because their organs have already failed and shut down. "Dead men walking".
 
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Gene Mean

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Speaking of kids, here's my two., Ella and Kevin. I've been bringing them on far away adventures since they were in diapers. I hope it makes them better citizens of this great country of ours!

View attachment 1986636 View attachment 1986637
You have a beautiful family and very inspiring hiking grounds. Thank you for the pix and your service to this great country.
 

GoDeep

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You have a beautiful family and very inspiring hiking grounds. Thank you for the pix and your service to this great country.
Thank you, they're good kids. Not too needy, not too caught up in the internet like their dad...lol

It is a great country isn't it? If one actually turns off the news and gets out there on a nice tranquil fall day of detecting....bliss i tell you!
 

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