San Gabriel Valley Tribune

San Gabriel Valley Tribune
Article Published: Sunday, January 11, 2004 - 9:12:52 PM PST

Boy killed in fall during mountain hike

SAN BERNARDINO -- A 15- year-old boy died Sunday after he fell down a steep canyon in the San Bernardino Mountains near Devore, a fire department spokesman said.

Matt Jones of San Bernardino was hiking with two friends, also 15-year-old boys, when he lost his footing and fell about 400 feet, said Jack Dejong of the San Bernardino County Fire Department.

"The other two decided at that point they should just stay put,' Dejong said. "They had a cell phone, and they called for help.'

The boys' 9-1-1 call came in about 10:30 a.m., Dejong said, but rescue workers were not able to pluck them from the hillside with a helicopter until more than four hours later.

Sheriff's spokeswoman Cindy Beavers said Jones was motionless when rescue workers arrived and did not respond when they called out to him before heading down into the canyon. He was dead when they reached him, Dejong said.

The canyon had been burned in last year's wildfires and experienced mudslides in December, but Dejong said it was not clear if that was a factor in the accident.

Copyright 2003 San Gabriel Valley Tribune
Los Angeles Newspaper Group