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Fatality on Mount Ritter in California

August 11 2004 at 10:22 AM
roger  (Login dipper)

Response to August 2004 Accidents/Rescues


The body of a Los Gatos man who fell about 75 feet to his death while climbing Mount Ritter in eastern Madera County was recovered late Monday, a spokeswoman for the Madera County Sheriff's Department reported.
Dead is Otto Loenneker, 59, who was reported missing Sunday after he failed to return to his camp at the base of the mountain.
The spokeswoman, Erica Stuart, said Loenneker had been climbing with a friend when the two men reportedly set off in different directions early Sunday to scout for possible routes for a later attempt to the summit.
Loenneker is believed to have hit an ice field, causing him to fall to his death.
A helicopter pilot spotted the body Monday shortly after 5:30 p.m. and a team of search and rescue volunteers organized by Mono County authorities was dropped into the area to recover the body.

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