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Missing Rafter

Posted: Jul 01 2014 7:42 am
by Dschur
Search Continues for Missing Man on Colorado River within Grand Canyon National Park

Date: June 29, 2014
Contact: Kirby-Lynn Shedlowski, 928-638-7958

Grand Canyon, Ariz.– National Park Service Search and Rescue crews continue to look for Victor Tseng of Phoenix, AZ who went missing at River Mile 157 on the Colorado River.

Search and Rescue teams searched the area by air and boat on Saturday, June 28th. They continue to search the area by boat. At this time no clues or signs of Mr. Tseng have been found.

Victor Tseng of Phoenix, AZ reportedly fell from a ledge into the river at approximately 3:10 p.m. on Friday, June 27. Tseng was not wearing a personal flotation device at the time and was last seen by members of his party below Havasu Rapids. Tseng is described as 68 years old, 5'7, 175 pounds with grey hair and brown eyes. He was wearing a long-sleeve aquamarine shirt, yellow bandana and tan pants.

The National Park Service is currently conducting a Search and Rescue operation. A missing persons investigation is on-going. No further information is available at this time. Any individual with information on the location of Victor Tseng should contact National Park Service Dispatch at 928-638-7805.

Re: Missing Rafter

Posted: Jul 01 2014 7:57 am
by azbackpackr
The rapids pass by those ledges on the downstream side of Havasu Creek's entrance to the river. If a person were to get too close to the edge, could fall in. This information should be drilled into all participants on a river trip. The river is very dangerous. If you fall into a rapid not wearing a PFD your chances of survival are very, very slim.

Last time I was down the river, I was rowing an 18-footer with a friend from Flag who has been a GC guide. He wanted me to try the somewhat tricky landing at the entrance to Havasu Creek. He said if I missed it, then immediately I had to set up to row the rapid just below the entrance. There is fast water at the entrance, you have to row really hard to get into it. So, I missed it. So, I quickly had to set up for that rapid. Did fine with the rapid.

Point is, it is all very fast water along through there. Not big rapids, but very fast, strong current. Best to wear the PFD when wandering around on those ledges if you are close to the river.

Sorry to hear about that man.

Re: Missing Rafter

Posted: Jul 01 2014 8:37 am
by Nighthiker
News reported that he fell from a ledge into the river and was not located.

Re: Missing Rafter

Posted: Feb 07 2015 7:02 pm
by brougham86
I visited my primary care last week and he asked, "did you know that Dr. Tseng died?". I hadn't heard, but when he told me the story, I assumed there would be a post here about it. They found his body on July 4 of last year. Links to some local stories about it are below. This news really bothered me. Some context: Last year I fell in a small rock-slide while hiking to Picacho Butte with Tough_Boots. My left ring finger got smashed between two of the rocks. The upper part of the finger was flopping around loosely, and could be pushed to a highly inappropriate angle. I think I remember Kyle saying something like "I don't think it's supposed to do that". I was terrified that I would never play guitar again, and couldn't for weeks and weeks. The ligament holding the knuckle together was completely ripped off the bone. Victor Tseng was the surgeon that repaired the torn ligament. He acknowledged the delicacy of my situation, and as a fellow musician, assured me that I would play guitar again someday. It took a while, but after some physical therapy, I began to play. The terror of losing the use of the finger motivated me to become a better player than I have been since my late teens. I held my daughter for the first time with a huge post-surgery splint on.

I was one of Dr. Tseng's last patients before his retirement. He was excited to begin traveling and hiking more regularly. It really sucks that he never got the chance to enjoy his retirement. Please be careful in the Canyon, everyone. Thank you Dr. Tseng. ... ctor-tseng ... /16299985/

Re: Missing Rafter

Posted: Feb 07 2015 8:21 pm
by azbackpackr
My understanding is that he fell in next to the ledge next to the river just below Havasu Creek when his party had stopped to see the creek. There is a rapid running right under the ledge along there downstream from the mouth of the creek. I know that because last time I tried to pull in there I missed the pull-in, it's a bit tricky. So then I had to quickly spin the raft and set up to run that little rapid right next to the wall on river left. It's not that hard to run, but is narrow and a little rocky.

It's well known that falling into a rapid without a PFD on is pretty much a death sentence. Commercial river guides do generally tell their clients to wear the PFD at all times when near the river, especially if there is a rapid there. But of course, they can't watch everyone at every moment.

It's truly a tragedy, and more so when it's such an important member of the community who helped so many people such as yourself. I'm glad to hear you can still play the guitar. It's now a part of the good doctor's legacy.