JOSHUA TREE NATIONAL PARK — A man died Thursday, Oct. 4, afternoon while scrambling across boulders in the park.
Antonio Coronel Mojica, 42, of Culver City, lost consciousness about 2:40 p.m. at Hall of Horrors, a rock-climbing area between Ryan Mountain and Jumbo Rocks.
Mojica and his two companions had decided to take a break while hiking atop a rock formation, the Riverside County coroner reported. A witness saw Mojica fall over from a seated position between two rocks.
The Joshua Tree National Park Search and Rescue responded and found Mojica on a ledge 50 feet above the ground, Ranger Dave Carney said in a news release.
The rescuers tried to resuscitate him, but Mojica did not respond. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
Internet searches indicate Mojica worked at Loyola Marymount University and had been married to Elle Manzano for 13 years.
Friends and family described him as a loving and patient man.
“Ready to do some climbing” is his last entry on his Facebook page, made Thursday at Joshua Tree National Park.
The Riverside County coroner and sheriff’s deputies are investigating Mojica’s death, which a coroner’s news release calls a hiking accident.