Volunteer talks about rescue of hiker who fell near Henline Falls

An Oregon hiker was seriously hurt after falling 30 feet near Henline Falls in Marion County. He had to spend Saturda...

Posted: Feb. 5, 2018 9:54 AM
Updated: Feb. 5, 2018 5:51 PM

An Oregon hiker was seriously hurt after falling 30 feet near Henline Falls in Marion County. He had to spend Saturday night in the woods with rescue crews.

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On Sunday, FOX 12 spoke with a volunteer who helped save the young man.

"Andrew was a trooper. He was in a difficult location. The terrain was very unforgiving," said Todd Shechter with the Corvallis Mountain Rescue Unit.

He was one of at least 30 people who helped rescue 21-year old Andrew Agnesse of Beaverton.

"It was a sheer rock face that he fell down," Shechter said. "When we got there, he was at the bottom of that."

Crews geared up in the dark, ready to hike in and rappel down through relentless terrain near Henline Falls. Their goal? To save a seriously injured hiker.

"Our team was with him all night and we first made contact at midnight," said Shechter.

He said Agnesse was hiking with two friends Saturday when he plummeted 30 feet. A friend ran for help, sparking the full-on search.

"We had rock coming down from up above us and as we moved across the slope, rocks would get kicked off and go down below us, so a very dangerous environment," Shechter said.

Shechter said conditions were too dangerous to move Agnesse in the dark. After getting him to a safer location, they had to wait until morning.

With the sun up and the all-clear, a Black Hawk helicopter with the Oregon Army National Guard moved close to the tree line, hoisting the hiker off the mountain around 9:30 Sunday morning.

"They thanked us profusely, that means a lot when we get to meet the family," said Shechter.

Search crews checked in on the hiker at the hospital, only to be met by gratitude from the hiker's family.

"To see the family and meet the family is very special for us," Shechter said.

FOX 12 did speak with Agnesse on Sunday. He was not ready to be interviewed on camera.

He is doing OK and is now recovering at home.

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