Death of Camelback Mountain Hiker Eric Fernandes Caused by June Heat, County Says

A Seattle hiker whose disappearance on Camelback Mountain in June launched a tepid, three-day search died of heat-related complications, officials say.

The body of Eric Fernandes, 23, was found on June 3 by a hiker who, along with some friends, had taken it upon themselves to keep searching after authorities held back. New Times covered the tragedy and the authorities' lackluster search, in a July 9 feature article

"There was no evidence of foul play," wrote Dr. Mark Shelly, Maricopa County Medical Examiner, in a report obtained by New Times on Friday. Fernandes "likely developed an elevated core temperature that led to unconsciousness and ultimately death."

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Ray Stern has worked as a newspaper reporter in Arizona for more than two decades. He's won numerous awards for his reporting, including the Arizona Press Club's Don Bolles Award for Investigative Journalism.