A scaled-back search for Jackson Standefer and Lou-Ann Merrell was continuing on Thursday, the two hikers who were swept down a stream in the Grand Canyon over the weekend.
The 62-year-old Merrell and her 14-year-old step-grandson were with a group of four on Saturday when they attempted to cross the canyon’s Tapeats Creek before getting swept away, said Fox 13 in Salt Lake City.
Rescue teams began searching for the two on Sunday morning.
Park spokeswoman Robin Martin said ground teams have checked all areas of the park that can be reached by foot, but have found nothing, according to the New York Daily News, and now they are going to use a helicopter, drone and motorized inflatable raft to continue the search.
Merrell is from Vernal, Arizona, and Standefer si from Chattanooga, Tennessee.
Their family voiced support for the park staff in their decision to change the search, according to WDEF.
“After carefully considering all the information available to us, and based on our personal knowledge of the search area, we support Grand Canyon National Park’s decision to scale back the search,” said the family.
“We also know countless people were praying for a much different outcome than this one. We felt your prayers and were sustained by them in ways we cannot begin to describe. We are profoundly grateful for the support that continues to pour in from across the country.”
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