Family of Hiker Michelle Yu Expresses Gratitude to Rescuers

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Michelle Yu (Photo courtesy the Yu family)
Earlier today a team of medics and a coroner from Los Angeles County hoisted the body believed to be that of missing hiker Michelle Yu from the Fish Fork area of Mount Baldy, according to LA Now. Although the woman's body's description and clothing match that of Yu, 49, an autopsy is scheduled for tomorrow to make a positive identification and to determine cause of death.

Yu, an experienced hiker, was trekking up Baldy Peak then walking to Baldy Notch, and had planned to take the ski lift down the hill. "Search-and-rescue crews have speculated that fog and otherwise poor conditions at the peak might have confused the hiker, causing her to take a wrong turn, slip and fall."

Following the discovery of the body, Yu's family issued a statement by email expressing gratitude to all those who helped in the search and recovery. "We cannot comprehend a world without our Michelle, but find some comfort in knowing that she left us while doing something she loved."

Their full statement follows.

Over the course of the last four days, our family has fought to keep hope alive that our beloved Michelle would come home to us after an exhausting ordeal on Mount Baldy. We are simply devastated to know now that she will not.

Our family cannot adequately express our grief at the untimely passing of our vibrant,
incredible Michelle; but, we have been so touched by and grateful for the outpouring of support from so many people who loved and cared for her. From the bottom of our hearts, we thank you for all of your thoughts, prayers, and efforts.

“Thank you” does not begin to sufficiently relay our immense gratitude and appreciation for all of the counties, especially San Bernardino and Los Angeles, which extended such tremendous support to the Search and Rescue efforts to find Michelle in difficult conditions at the risk of their own safety. To all of the officials, countless volunteers, and well-wishers who contributed vastly in the efforts to recover our loved one, we are forever grateful. Our family would also like to extend our deepest gratitude to Pastor Ron Thomas and the Mt. Baldy VillageChurch for opening their doors to family and friends during the search.

We cannot comprehend a world without our Michelle, but find some comfort in knowing
that she left us while doing something she loved. For those so inclined, in lieu of flowers or any other forms of sympathy, our family would appreciate you supporting your local Sheriff’s Search and Rescue programs through contributions made in memory of Michelle Yu