Mount St. Helena fatality

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Mount St. Helena fatality

Walden Grindle a 35-year-old Napa County man was killed Sunday afternoon (22/09/13) after he apparently parachuted off Mount St. Helena and crashed.

Authorities Sunday said he apparently hiked up a fire trail to the top of the mountain, where he jumped with some type of parachute. The Napa County Sheriff's Office, initially reported it as a paragliding accident, later said Grindle was found with a “speed parachute.”

Sheriff' Sgt. Doug Pace said he made a call following the crash to report that he was injured and that he had possibly broken his hip. He also activated an emergency beacon that notified the GEOS International Emergency Response Coordination Center, which in turn contacted sheriff's emergency dispatch at about 12:40 p.m. Grindle was found at about 1:10 p.m. A crew member aboard the Sonoma County Sheriff's Office helicopter was sent down on a long line to help the injured man, but he already was dead.


Napa County Sheriff's Captain Leroy Anderson said he believed Walden had been attempting to "speed parachute" from Mount Saint Helena, a 1,323-metre peak, on Sunday. It is beleived he had glided around the edge of the mountain before colliding with a protruding rock ?  "He probably just misjudged how close he was to the rock formation,"

Walden Grindle was an experienced BASE jumper and there was no indication of equipment failure.

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