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  1. #1
    GSMNP 900 Miler HooKooDooKu's Avatar
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    Default Bear Euthanized in GSMNP After Body of Missing Hiker Found

    News Story

    Only thing being reported is that a man was reported missing Sunday. When they found his body, evidence of scavaging were seen. A bear was agreaive towards personnel while the body was being removed and that bear was put down for public safety concerns.

    No cause of death has been reported yet (so we don't know if this was the result of a bear attack, or something else such as a heart attack and wildlife came upon the body.

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    Well, lets hope the bear just stumbled on an easy meal laying in the trail. Not that it would make this any less tragic, but knowing the bear was not the actual cause of death would be reassuring.
    The AT - It has it's ups and downs...

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    yeah...

    my station (wbir.com) has been working this story today...

    hopefully we will find out the cause of death.....

    (just noticed HooKooDooKu posted link to our story)...

    there was a big time gap between him missing on friday----the initial call on sunday that he was missing----and when he was found on tuesday....

    the gap between friday and sunday is pretty significant as potentially he could have been found earlier if he had been reported missing earlier...

    but, thats hindsight.......

    hopefully we will know more in the next few days...

    i would expect the results of the autopsy to take a while though......

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    also, fwiw, we talked with his family today as well...

    that story will run on our 10/11 pm eastern time newscasts tonight.....

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    Registered User rmitchell's Avatar
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    Condolences to his family.

    Weather wasn't bad Friday or Saturday so that isn't likely a factor. Probably too young for heart attack. If off trail could have encountered yellow jackets or rattle snake.

    We may never know.

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    If it walks like a duck... This is the Smokies, with a bear population managed to the highest density ever.

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    If off trail could have encountered yellow jackets or rattle snake.


    or taken a fall.....

    or committed suicide...

    or been murdered....

    or ran outta water/food.....



    and that's the thing--we may never know.........


    (and its bad to speculate like some other forums have taken to............one guy insists that there is no other answer than to say he was bitten by a snake)

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    MuddyWaters's Avatar
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    Defensive wounds on hands and arms are a giveaway if present
    "Inevitably, a long distance hiker must choose between travelling light, and not travelling at all." - Earl V. Shaffer

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    Quote Originally Posted by MuddyWaters View Post
    Defensive wounds on hands and arms are a giveaway if present


    and that we may never know as well.....

    i covered the death back in 2000, but cant remember if wounds came up in the conversation...

    i will ask my people to make sure they ask the park about it...............not sure if they will give an answer though...

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    GSMNP 900 Miler HooKooDooKu's Avatar
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    I started this post in hopes that when any facts come to light that they might be shared (if appropriate) so that we can understand what happened.

    Since an autopsy report should be able to answer obvious questions such as if there was a snake bite, defensive wounds, etc.

    In the mean time, IHMO, there isn't much point in making speculations until we know more facts.

  11. #11

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    "Hill and a companion, Joshua Morgan, reportedly came to the park on Friday to hunt for ginseng, the National Park Service said. Harvesting ginseng is illegal in the park."

    https://www.knoxnews.com/story/news/...ed/1280463002/
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  12. #12

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    Really interested to know the cause of death. I know we might never know, but wouldn't it be pretty obvious if a bear attacked him? Then again, maybe not if he had been out there and been scavenged on (which sounds awful). Ehhh I hate these types of stories... deaths... bears...

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    GSMNP 900 Miler HooKooDooKu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DownYonder View Post
    "Hill and a companion, Joshua Morgan, reportedly came to the park on Friday to hunt for ginseng, the National Park Service said. Harvesting ginseng is illegal in the park."

    https://www.knoxnews.com/story/news/...ed/1280463002/
    Yeah, ginseng is NOT on the list of plants for which an individual is allowed to harvest up to 1lb per day for personal use ( not that I think he was searching for ginseng for personal use).

    But all that really tells us as it relates to the death (of either the bear or the man) is that there is a high probability the body was 'off trail'.

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    Registered User cneill13's Avatar
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    This is going to be quite interesting to see how this story turns out. First, in the cause of death and, second, how the park service reacts if it was in fact a bear attack.

    Given the guy's age, it likely was not a health-related issue. And since he had a purpose in hunting for ginseng, I would rule out suicide.

    He was either killed by another person, fell to his death or was attacked a killed by and bear. Those are my assumptions.

    If he did commit suicide and a bear was subsequently killed for eating his body, then he actually caused two deaths.

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    But all that really tells us as it relates to the death (of either the bear or the man) is that there is a high probability the body was 'off trail'.



    the body was found off trail............

    "found approximately a half mile from rich mountain road and less than a mile from the residential area outside the park" according to the Park....

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    second, how the park service reacts if it was in fact a bear attack.


    i think they will react the same way they did with the last death that was caused by a bear....

    and for the most part---they have already...

    killed the bear.........close the area down for a little bit..........do an investigation...........put up some warning signs......

    and mostly deflect the detractors who are pissed that they killed a bear.........



    of course, since the cause of death is still not out------we are back to speculating....

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    Quote Originally Posted by TNhiker View Post
    i think they will react the same way they did with the last death that was caused by a bear....

    and for the most part---they have already...

    killed the bear.........close the area down for a little bit..........do an investigation...........put up some warning signs......

    and mostly deflect the detractors who are pissed that they killed a bear.........



    of course, since the cause of death is still not out------we are back to speculating....
    Yup
    Bears kill people
    Not often
    But they do

    Anyone not ok with that, should stay home
    "Inevitably, a long distance hiker must choose between travelling light, and not travelling at all." - Earl V. Shaffer

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    I believe the evidence will show that he tripped on a tree stump, fell an hit his head upn a large rock leaving him partially paralyzed whereupon he had a heart attack and was subsequently eaten by the bear only because he didn't have any food on him.

    Any other suggestion is pure speculation.

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    GSMNP 900 Miler HooKooDooKu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cneill13 View Post
    ...He was either killed by another person...
    You know, I didn't initially think of this as a possibility... After all, in the last 25 years, I don't recall ever hearing any news stories of someone getting murdered in GSMNP.

    But given that it's basically being reported that the victim was a ginseng poacher... there is the possibility:
    1. He might have encountered another ginseng poacher and was killed as the result of an argument over "territory".
    2. Given his proximity to residential areas, he might have entered private property, was shot by a homeowner, retreated to woods where he died of gun shot wounds.

    But other than listing possibilities, again it is a bit ridiculous to speculate until we hear more facts... especially since an autopsy should be able to easily determine if he was killed by a bullet or a bear (unless the news is neglecting to report something like too much of the evidence getting "scavenged").
    Last edited by HooKooDooKu; 09-13-2018 at 13:15.

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    Registered User scope's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MuddyWaters View Post
    Yup
    Bears kill people
    Not often
    But they do

    Anyone not ok with that, should stay home
    In general, no they don't.

    However, I have to wonder if some outlier incidents in recent years are an indication of a changing pattern of behavior. Darwin stuff.
    "I wonder if anyone else has an ear so tuned and sharpened as I have, to detect the music, not of the spheres, but of earth, subtleties of major and minor chord that the wind strikes upon the tree branches. Have you ever heard the earth breathe... ?"
    - Kate Chopin

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