NEWPORT BEACH — A 43-year-old Newport Beach man who was reported missing last month was found dead in Sequoia National Park east of Visalia, authorities announced Monday.
Matthew Thoke was last seen at about 1 p.m. on July 21 on the park’s High Sierra Trail, according to a statement from a National Parks Service official.
Thoke broke from his group as they were hiking towards the Crescent Meadow Trail and went south downhill without his pack.
Search efforts began the same day, but were ultimately scaled back on Aug. 2. Thoke’s family recruited search teams to continue the efforts in coordination with National Park Service incident managers.
Thoke’s body was discovered on Saturday in an area of the park “that was not visible by air and hardly visible on the ground, not far from where he was last seen, in technical terrain,” the statement said.
National Park Service rangers recovered his body Sunday.
It was not immediately clear how Thoke died. Further details about the death were not able to be shared, according to a tweet from the account of Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks.
“We are saddened by this conclusion but are grateful for all the agencies, organizations, friends and family who worked on this effort,” said Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks Superintendent Clay Jordan.
“It often takes a village to bring things to a close. We ask that the public and press continue to respect the family’s privacy in this extremely difficult time.”
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