Crews rescue stranded hiker in Greene County

Crews rescue stranded hiker in Greene County

Posted: Updated:
A man was rescued Friday afternoon after being trapped on a cliff in Greeneville. A man was rescued Friday afternoon after being trapped on a cliff in Greeneville.
The man was stranded on a 5 by 5 foot ledge near Margarette Falls. (source: Greene County Rescue Squad) The man was stranded on a 5 by 5 foot ledge near Margarette Falls. (source: Greene County Rescue Squad)
Crews were able to rescue the man by helicopter and bring him down to safety around 3:30 p.m. Friday. Crews were able to rescue the man by helicopter and bring him down to safety around 3:30 p.m. Friday.

By SAMANTHA MANNING
6 News Reporter

GREENEVILLE (WATE) - Rescue crews in Greeneville were able to rescue a hiker Friday afternoon who had been stranded on a ledge near Margarette Falls since Thursday.

North Carolina National Guard members were able to rescue the man, identified by family members as Eric Farris, by Black Hawk helicopter and bring him down to safety around 3:30 p.m. Friday.

Greene and Washington County rescue squads tried to reach Farris overnight, but weren't successful.

Rescue squad officials told 6 News Farris was stranded on a 5 by 5 foot ledge. Three people were hiking with him originally, including a minor, but they made it out.

"The problem was they couldn't get to him," Greenville Emergency & Rescued Squad worker Kim Taylor said. "He was on a rock cliff that the rocks kept getting in the way. They couldn't safely get up to him."

They say he had been there since around 2 p.m. Thursday and was wearing a short sleeved shirt and shorts, so officials were worried about hypothermia.

Officials say fog kept previous rescue attempts from being successful.

"Timing is important in situations like this," said Bill Brown, Director of Emergency Management & Homeland Security for Greeneville/Greene County. "I was really concerned because as soon as we talked to the pilot and they had clearance to come back, then the fog started moving back in so I said oh no here we go again but luckily we rescued him."

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