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The 76-year-old Man’s Body Was Found by Officials Thanks to His Hat. He Died After Falling Down a California Cliff


A hat, according to California authorities, led investigators to the finding of a 76-year-old man who had fallen from a 50-foot cliff and perished.

Gregory Noyes, of Point Arena, was reported missing for two days, and on Friday, May 17, deputies at Jug Handle State Natural Reserve discovered his body on rocks below the cliff’s edge, according to the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office.

According to the sheriff’s office, Noyes’ car was found in the popular picturesque area’s parking lot by California State Parks officials. The vehicle had been in the location south of Fort Bragg for several days.

Officers discovered Noyes’s body below a large-brimmed hat that was resting on the side of the cliff after doing a “hurried search” of the park.

Sheriff’s deputies saw that the man had died from serious injuries he had sustained in the fall after making their way down the cliff.

Authorities added that images and his driver’s license from California were used to identify him.

Noyes left for Marin County on May 12 and was reported missing on May 15, according to the sheriff’s office.

Since there is no proof of foul play, the authorities believe Noyes’ death to be accidental.

The Ecological Staircase Trail in the state park offers a tour of the “geological updrift,” which extends two and a half miles inland from the ocean to the Pygmy Forest.

Hikers and other visitors are advised by the park’s managers to appreciate the distinctive natural environment but to “stay back from the cliff edges,” since they can be “unstable and can crumble underfoot.”

Anyone with information on the event is asked to contact the Sheriff’s Office Dispatch Center at 707-463-4086, according to the sheriff’s office.

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