A California man was found dead in Death Valley National Park after running out of gas and began walking in an extreme heat wave, park officials said.
The body of David Kelleher, 67, was found on Tuesday nearly a week after running out of gas, according to a news release from the National Park Service.
On June 8, a park ranger noticed one vehicle left in Zabriskie Point parking lot. Three days later, the same ranger saw the vehicle during a heat wave that caused temperatures up to 123°F.
The park learned the car was registered to Kelleher, of Huntington Beach, the statement said. A records search found that he was cited on May 30 for off-road driving.
“A crumpled note inside Kelleher’s vehicle said, ‘Out of gas,'” the statement said.
Kelleher was not reported missing and a ground search was limited due to hot weather.
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Around 2 p.m. on Tuesday, Kelleher’s body was found 2.5 miles from his vehicle and 30-feet from California Highway 190 surrounded by terrain.
This is the park’s second fatality in the park this month. The body of 69-year-old John McCarry was found on June 1 in Panamint Valley, according to the statement.
“The National Park Service encourages park visitors to stay safe in the summer by not hiking at low elevations after 10 a.m., staying within a short walk of air conditioning, drinking plenty of water, and eating salty snacks,” the statement said.
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