- Sheetal Patel, 47, of Chattanooga, had hiked to the national park to begin a multi-day commercial boating trip from Phantom Ranch.
An Indian American woman from Tennessee died after falling into the Colorado River in Grand Canyon National Park earlier this month. Sheetal Patel, 47, of Chattanooga, was cooling off on June 12 afternoon along Pipe Creek Beach when she was caught by a current in the Colorado River, according to a statement from the National Parks Service. She had hiked into the Grand Canyon to meet a multi-day commercial boating trip from Phantom Ranch.
Commercial guides were able to reach the woman by boat and pull her from the river to begin CPR, the statement added. Resuscitation efforts were unsuccessful and the woman was pronounced dead by Park Rangers.
As per the statement, visitors to the Grand Canyon “should ensure they are drinking plenty of fluids, resting in shade during the heat of the day, watching for signs of distress in traveling companions, and dressing appropriately for the weather, which includes light-colored and loose-fitting clothing.” The NPS does not recommend hiking from the rim to the river and back in one day, it added.
An investigation into the incident is being conducted by the National Park Service in coordination with the Coconino County Medical Examiner.