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Sheriff's helicopter rescues injured hiker at coast

A Sebastopol man walking along a coastal bluff Sunday afternoon fell head down into a rocky crevasse and couldn't free himself, leading to a family search, a missing person report and eventual rescue by state parks and the Sonoma County sheriff's helicopter crew.

The 68-year-old man was taken to Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital.

The man, who wasn't identified, had gone with family members Father's Day afternoon to Goat Rock State Park.

At one point he took a walk by himself along the Kortum Trail, south of the park.

He apparently either had left the trail and was attempting to make his way to the beach below or had moved to the bluff edge when he fell, said Josh Perucchi, Bodega Bay paramedic firefighter.

The man tumbled about 15 feet into an opening in the rocks, hit his head and was jammed into the rocks and couldn't move, said Sonoma County sheriff's Deputy Chris Mahoney.

The man was stuck in an area that turned out to be only visible by air or sea but not from the trail, Mahoney said.

When the man didn't return from his walk his family began a lengthy search. They reported him missing at 7:30 p.m. and state park rangers who joined the effort.

At about 8:10 p.m. the helicopter was called. The crew spotted him at 8:25 p.m.

Mahoney and Jeremy Stinson, supervising state park ranger, were lowered to the man by the helicopter's long line.


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