LOS ANGELES (AP) — High winds from a storm sweeping across Northern California uprooted a huge tree that killed an employee at Yosemite National Park as he lay in his tent cabin.

Park spokesman Scott Gediman says 27-year-old Ryan Hiller of Chapel Hill, N.C. was killed instantly by a branch from the tree at about 6:30 a.m. Saturday.

Hiller is a ranger during busy periods at the park, but had been working for a park concessioner and staying in the Yosemite Valley stable complex while waiting for the winter ski season.

Gedimane says Hiller was a “very skilled ranger” who often helped in search-and-rescue efforts.

He says cold rains fell on the park Saturday and winds knocked down many large trees, but no other injuries have been reported.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press)

Comments (3)
  1. AppreciateWhatRangers Do says:

    May he rest in peace. We should appreciate all the Rangers do. After all, they no only do it as a job, but as a job for all of us to enjoy a protected place in nature, and I’m sure a place he enjoyed himself.

  2. sassafras says:

    It is very dangerous to be asleep in a tent under trees in the forest during windy weather, novice campers know this. I can’t imagine why a ranger who knows how dangerous this can be was doing it. You are right we should appreciate what they do. He went to heaven in a beautiful place to another beautiful place.

  3. Mike says:

    One reason he was in a tent cabin was because of the very few hard sided cabins available, usually only for those privileged few who have been in the Yosemite union long enough, or managers. Summer of 2010 I lived in one that had been destroyed the winter before. The concessionaire (DNC) doesn’t want to put in more hard cabins because they could lose the contract if another company comes in and re-bids.

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