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Bodies found in Yosemite National Park

Merced River, winter, Yosemite National Park

The Merced River, in Yosemite National Park, is one of the most beautiful rivers I know.

But its rushing waters in spring can be deadly and without mercy….

I wrote about the deaths of three young people who were swept over Vernal Fall in July of this year, by the extraordinary volume of water from record snows.

“The three Yosemite visitors, Ramina Badal, 21, Ninos Yacoub, 27, and Hormiz David, 22, had gone over or around a guardrail upstream of Vernal Fall at the top of the Mist Trail, to stand in knee-deep water. After photographing each other and playing in the water, Badal slipped, and all three were pulled over the 317-foot waterfall.”

In recent days, two bodies have been found where the three hikers were swept over 317-foot (96.9-m) Vernal Fall. The body of Hormiz David, of Modesto, was recovered in August about 240 feet (73-2 m) from the base of the waterfall.

In a statement today, park officials said that the body found in the Merced River about one-half mile from the base of the waterfall by a park ranger last Tuesday was determined to be that of Ninos Yacoub of Turlock, California.

A third body was found on Saturday, near the location where Yacoub’s body was discovered, according to park rangers today. Authorities are likely to make a positive identification within the next several days.

We extend our sympathies to the families and friends, and we hope that the next few days brings some closure to those who have suffered from their loss.

-Bill at

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