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California hiker found dead after falling 20 feet down Oregon bluff and being swept into the ocean

Shores of Cape Kiwanda in Oregon
Posted at 2:21 PM, Mar 08, 2023
and last updated 2023-03-08 14:21:05-05

A 25-year-old hiker from California was found dead after falling from a rocky bluff along the Oregon coast and being swept into the ocean over the weekend, authorities said.

Henry Minh Hoang, of West Covina, California, was hiking beyond a safety fence in an area known as "the punch bowl" in the Cape Kiwanda State Natural Area when he slipped and fell about 20 feet to the water's edge, Oregon State Police said in a news release.

"The victim was reportedly knocked unconscious from the fall and was swept into the ocean by the waves," state police said. "Witnesses lost sight of the victim and the rescue operation later transitioned into a likely recovery operation."

State police responded to the area Saturday afternoon to help search for the man. The recovery effort was suspended at some point until Sunday morning, "when searchers could safely resume their efforts," state police said.

Hoang was found dead late Sunday afternoon on the shoreline at the bottom of a nearby cliff, and his body was taken to a local funeral home, authorities said.

The Cape Kiwanda State Natural Area near Tillamook, Oregon, features a sandstone headland known for its ocean views. The cliff edge can crumble without warning, and people have died after climbing over the safety fences, Oregon State Parks officials warn on their website.