Two UA Students Help Rescue Injured Climber

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FAYETTEVILLE (KFSM) ~ Hiking trails around The Natural State is a commonality for Kenney Lewis and Cameron Cheri.

“We like to go hiking every now and then, and we usually go to Devil’s Den, “said Cheri, a University of Arkansas senior.

But, a Monday afternoon hike in Lost Valley was one that the two will never forget.

“A guy comes off of the trail and says ‘hey, can you come help me’,” Cheri said.

A young man had fallen from a cliff near some waterfalls, where he was climbing.

“He was trying to climb some cliff he shouldn’t have climbed,” said Lewis, a University of Arkansas senior.

It had been raining heavily that day.

“The falls, there was tons of water pouring down, and it was dark, murky, muddy water,” Cheri said.

Lewis and Cheri agreed to help the friend in distress, while others ran to a nearby town to call for help.

“We thought he might have been dead,” Lewis said.

But after searching the falls, Cheri spotted the young injured man in a small cave.

“He had blood coming down his face and everything. He wasn’t looking too good,” Cheri said. “He looked really dazed and confused, like he didn’t really know where he was.”

The two then ran to find emergency crews, and volunteer search teams, to bring them back to the cave.

“Me, and Kinney, went to go find help, and that’s when a volunteer started coming up the trail,” Cheri said.

Cheri says the man who fell was too injured to yell for help.

“I was told he might have a fracture along his back,” Cheri said.

With such severe injuries, they decided not to move the injured man until emergency crews got to the scene.

“You really don’t want to mess up and get him more hurt,” Lewis said.

What was planned to be a relaxed hike in Arkansas, turned into a memorable day for the two.

“It was probably more exciting than a normal day hike would have been anyways,” Lewis said.

Cheri and Lewis don’t consider themselves heroic for their help in finding the fallen climber.

“We just helped the people that could help him,” Lewis said.

Cheri and Lewis tell 5NEWS the key to finding the injured climber was remaining calm, and retracing the trail that the climber had taken before the fall.


  • Tristan Stalbaum

    I’m the kid who fell and this isn’t anything the way it happened and I don’t know why the two u of a kids are getting all the glory it should be my friend who helped more than anyone and I wasn’t climbing or anything may making it sound like I did this on purpose so if your going t writ something write the truth

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