Margaret Osswald Salt Lake City Utah woman falls to her death during boating trip while hiking along Ledges Camp during meet up along the Grand Canyon.
Salt Lake City woman Margaret ‘Meg’ Osswald, the assistant director the Utah Division of Water Quality, was pronounced dead by Arizona safety officials at about 8:30 pm Monday after falling more than 20 feet during a hike just off the 1,450-mile-long river.
Oswald, 34, who in the past ten years has held posts at the Utah Attorney General Office, the Utah Department of Natural Resources, and the US Department of Justice, was on the sixth day of a ‘multi-day’ private river tour when she died.
Officials arrived at the scene near Ledges Camp – a site with stair-stepping slabs of rock – at river mile 152 by helicopter, responding to a report of an unresponsive river trip participant near the campground.
Authorities said Osswald had hiked into the canyon to meet members of the river trip at Phantom Ranch – a popular lodge more than 60 miles downriver at the bottom of the canyon – last Wednesday.
— Grand Canyon NPS (@GrandCanyonNPS) April 5, 2022
Authorities decline to release details of death
The National Park Service identified the victim as Osswald on Tuesday AZCentral reported.
‘We are deeply saddened by this loss,’ a spokesperson for the Utah Division of Water Quality said in a statement on Tuesday according to the Salt Lake Tribunal. ‘And our thoughts and support go out to her loved ones at this difficult time.’
The water quality division also confirmed that Osswald recently was appointed assistant director – a promotion noted in her LinkedIn profile.
National park officials said that campers tried CPR before crew members arrived, but were unsuccessful in their efforts to resuscitate her. It remained unclear how Osswald came to fall and what safety measures were in place along the hiking trail.
An investigation into the incident is currently being conducted by the state National Park Service and the Coconino County Medical Examiner’s Office. Both parties have declined to release any additional information regarding the incident.
According to the Utah State Bar, Osswald was a University of Utah law graduate and passed the bar in 2016.
She served in the Utah Attorney General’s Office environment and natural resources divisions for seven years before being promoted to her current position in the state’s water quality service according to her Linkedln profile.
Latest fatality in Grand Canyon
Prior to that, Osswald worked as a Forestry Technician Utah Department of Natural Resources, and a law clerk for the US Department of Justice.
The incident comes just 11 days after 68-year-old woman, Mary Kelley, died in the Grand Canyon along the Colorado River.
Four people overall have died so far this year in the sprawling national park, a Grand Canyon spokesperson said Tuesday.
The park service and the Coconino County Medical Examiner continue to investigate Osswald’s death.