A 17-year-old Utah resident, Zoe Afton McKinney, lost her life in a hiking accident at Kane Creek Canyon on Friday.
The Moab City Police Department reported that she was hiking the Moab Rim Trail with friends when she slipped. According to police, she “fell off a sheer cliff face.”
Despite her friends’ best efforts to reach her, they were unable to do so safely.
Emergency responders were able to reach McKinney with the help of climbing gear but unfortunately, she had already perished from the fall.
The Grand County School District, where McKinney was a student, expressed their sorrow for the loss and offered support for the grieving school community.
Lloyd Gist, her boyfriend of almost a year, fondly remembered McKinney for her bright smile, kindness, and adventurous spirit. He spoke of how she welcomed him with open arms when he moved to Moab and how she never let her small stature limit her.
McKinney was a cheerleader, an avid dirt biker, and had aspirations of becoming an EMT. The couple had plans of starting a life together after they graduated high school this summer.
McKinney’s loss has been a devastating blow to those who knew and loved her.
Her friends and family remember her as a remarkable young woman who inspired others to live life to the fullest.