Missing Hiker in Yosemite

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catullus
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Re: Missing Hiker in Yosemite

Postby catullus » Wed May 08, 2013 6:00 pm

DaveSwink wrote:
peter303 wrote:Suicide one of the top 3 causes of death for males 50-80.


Wow. Say it ain't so. I am in that age range. :shock:

Peter, I have to say that sounds very high to me. The CDC lists just 150 suicides per 100,000 in men over 65. http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/ahcd/agingtrends/06olderpersons.pdf

Wikianswers says there are about 40 million people over 50 in the US, and about 32,000 suicides per year (2004). If half of the 40 million oldies are men and all of the suicides in the US are men over 50, that is still far less than 1% of those 20 million men dying from suicide.

Can you provide a source for us to look at?


It's number 4.

http://www.cdc.gov/injury/wisqars/pdf/10LCID_All_Deaths_By_Age_Group_2010-a.pdf
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DaveSwink
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Re: Missing Hiker in Yosemite

Postby DaveSwink » Wed May 08, 2013 7:04 pm



Thanks! I found that there are about 110K deaths per year in the 45 - 54 years old group with almost 9K suicides. That is about 8% which sounds about right to be cause of death #4.

The important thing is that after 55 years, suicide falls right out of the top ten causes of death and I am 57 years old. Whew! Seems like a middle-age crisis thing?
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Re: Missing Hiker in Yosemite

Postby 2giqs » Wed May 08, 2013 8:22 pm

steelfrog wrote:Look, I think we have to recognize that part of the fun of what a lot of us do is that we are tip toeing on the edge. We are many many times just a shifting rock or momentary loss of balance away from death or serious injury. So for that reason I choose not to judge this dude. He lived a long life and died in a fantastic place doing what he loved, not in an antiseptic hospital or hospice. So there are worser ways to go for sure!


I caught just the tail end of this fellow's flail. He was cool about it. Not everybody else was.

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Re: Missing Hiker in Yosemite

Postby zdero1 » Wed May 08, 2013 8:40 pm

Fisching wrote:I came across two blurbs when looking through a few of TallGrass' links. This one is from the LA Times:
"Twelve people have gone over Vernal Fall in the past, park officials said. None survived."
(It's now 13 - this was published after last year's 3 deaths)

This was also a blurb from last year's LA Times blog: http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2011/07/yosemite-waterfall-deaths-families-hire-consultant-to-assess-safety.html
"The families of three hikers who were swept over Yosemite National Park's Vernal Fall last week have hired a consultant to assess whether safety measures were adequate...Kiryakous told the Bee that the signs and railing are not enough...'I'm not content with that skimpy little rail,' Kiryakous said."


Perhaps I giant wall can be built to ensure safety. Sure no one will be able to see the falls, but it will prevent people from utilizing their own stupidity.
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Re: Missing Hiker in Yosemite

Postby zdero1 » Wed May 08, 2013 8:50 pm

MonGoose wrote:
osprey wrote:I am a little amazed by the contrast of the criticism of the individuals going to their deaths over the falls vs the almost prohibition of criticism on this site of back country skiiers or climbers who go to their deaths in avalanches. I am not criticising any of the people who have died. My question is why do some people consider some deaths almost noble and while other deaths are considered stupid when somewhat similiar mistakes in judgement were made by the deceased.



I am also surprised by the difference in tone between the Yosemite incident and the Loveland Pass avalanche. I personally don't view one incident different than the other, as I wasn't there for either event and I know very few of the details. We don't know this man's reasoning or mental state at the time of his passing. What I do know is that people have lost a family member, a friend and a companion. While I think the facts speak for themselves, our criticism has the potential to add additional hurt for the survivors.


+1

Well said, Nick. I share your sentiments.

I'd like to think that we on 14ers.com have a bit more compassion and respect (edit: than those on a Yahoo chat board) for those who have passed doing what we all love: Being outdoors.
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Re: Missing Hiker in Yosemite

Postby catullus » Wed May 08, 2013 11:30 pm

DaveSwink wrote:


Thanks! I found that there are about 110K deaths per year in the 45 - 54 years old group with almost 9K suicides. That is about 8% which sounds about right to be cause of death #4.

The important thing is that after 55 years, suicide falls right out of the top ten causes of death and I am 57 years old. Whew! Seems like a middle-age crisis thing?


Well, the rate of suicide doesn't decrease that much; it's really that you gain more OTHER things to die from TOO.
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Re: Missing Hiker in Yosemite

Postby peter303 » Thu May 09, 2013 6:20 am

I was going off of more recent information such as
http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/health/jan-june13/suicide_05-03.html
and the park-specific article
http://www.webmd.com/mental-health/news/20101202/41-suicide-attempts-a-year-in-national-parks.
And perhaps if there is neither a witness or note, "accidents" may not be all that.

So when I hear of a sudden death of a middle age man, I usually just think of two cuases: heart attack or suicide. Too many of both unfortunately.
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Re: Missing Hiker in Yosemite

Postby DaveSwink » Thu May 09, 2013 6:43 am

catullus wrote:Well, the rate of suicide doesn't decrease that much; it's really that you gain more OTHER things to die from TOO.


Haha! Great, now I feel better. :lol:
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Re: Missing Hiker in Yosemite

Postby bonehead » Fri May 10, 2013 7:07 am

I felt free to comment on this thread
because I have been to the
lip of Vernal Falls dozens of times.
I have hopped the rail on most of my visits.
Stupid and Reckless are the terms
I use reflecting upon my own actions.
I suppose they apply to all of us
who have disregarded clear warnings.
May he Rest in Peace.
Pat
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Fisching
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Re: Missing Hiker in Yosemite

Postby Fisching » Fri May 10, 2013 8:13 am

I've been refraining from saying anything else from my initial post as I don't want this thread to devolve since there have been many good points, reflections, and sympathies shared. I had a PM conversation with a friend about my response and feel I probably should share the rationale behind my initial emotional reaction instead of leaving it as one of my typical blunt posts:

For some reason, deaths at Vernal/Nevada Falls have always touched a sensitive spot with me. The last time I was in Yosemite was 2009 and mere days after completing the Half Dome cables route, which goes up and around Vernal Falls, two people who nearly drowned in Emerald Pool on the same day. I remember reading eyewitness accounts about the 3 killed from going over the falls two years ago and how someone in their group held their terrified, screaming 6-year old daughter over the railing prior to the tragedy and how the third person was killed trying to save the other two caught in the current.

Am I sad to hear someone died in an accident? Yes, as is the case in any similar situation, but my empathy only goes so far when the decision leading to the accident was a direct result of making a knowingly illicit decision by NPS regulations when it is well-signed and documented to be a poor choice. To me, it's no different than reading about someone who decided to drink-and-drive and ended up killing themselves when they wrapped their car around a telephone poll. There is a chasm-sized difference between deaths from a judgement call gone wrong (the Loveland avalanche) or unfortunate event (AZ climber & bees, Hagerman) and ones a direct result of ignoring regulations (Vernal Falls, DUI, etc) for safety.

In the case where I make a stupid decision, please by all means call me on it; you're probably doing me a favor.
Peter Aitchison on the risks of rock climbing and mountaineering: "That's life, isn't it? We think the challenge and satisfaction you get from doing this is worth the risks."
"Respect the mountain. Train hard. Hope you can sneak up when it isn't looking."
"The mind is always worried about consequences, but the heart knows no fear. The heart just does what it wants."

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