Search suspended for missing Mount Jefferson climber
July 28, 2021
The Linn County Sheriff's Office has suspended the search for a missing climber on Mount Jefferson, according to a news release issued Thursday afternoon.
Steven Van Pelt, 33, of Salem, has been missing since after 11:30 a.m. Friday, July 23, when he fell during his descent down the 10,495-foot mountain in the Willamette National Forest. Six mountain rescue teams were dispatched in the effort over extreme mountainous terrain with glacier drifts, falling rocks and debris. The search was suspended, according to the Sheriff's Office, because "the risk of continuing would jeopardize additional lives."
The agency has been in contact with Van Pelt's family, who are aware of the decision, Sheriff Jim Yon reported.
The Sheriff's Office was assisted in the six-day search by the Marion and Benton County sheriff's offices, Corvallis Mountain Rescue, Eugene Mountain Rescue, Deschutes Mountain Rescue, Portland Mountain Rescue, Hood River Mountain Rescue, Oregon Emergency Management, United States Army National Guard, Air Force Reserve (304th), LifeFlight, the Idanha Fire Department, the Detroit Fire Department, Amateur Radio Emergency Services and the United States Forest Service.