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Massachusetts woman dies of heat-related illness on hike in Arizona

WCVB Boston logo WCVB Boston 8/1/2021
a canyon with a mountain in the background: echo canyon trail, camelback mountain, phoenix © KNXV echo canyon trail, camelback mountain, phoenix

A Boston woman is dead after suffering a heat-related illness during a hike in Arizona on Friday evening.

Phoenix firefighters told ABC 15 the woman was visiting Phoenix with her boyfriend for the first time. They went for a hike on Echo Canyon Trail, which leads up Camelback Mountain, but the boyfriend said she became overheated halfway up the trail and turned around while he continued to the summit.

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The high temperature in Phoenix on Friday was around 104 degrees.

When the woman's companion returned to their vehicle at the trailhead, he was unable to find her. That's when he called 911.

Police and firefighters started to search the trail and surrounding neighborhoods.

"We were concerned with the information we were given that she was visiting from out of town, from Boston, the Massachusetts area, unfamiliar with this terrain, unfamiliar possibly with hiking in these elements. That's when we became concerned. That's when we started using every resource of the Phoenix Police Department," a police spokesperson said.

Officials told ABC 15 the woman, who was in her 30s, was found dead by an officer outside a home near the mountain. Firefighters believe she was attempting to reach someone for help before she collapsed.

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