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#150614 - 10/01/08 06:48 PM Fossett ID, other items found in Calif.
falcon5000 Offline
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Registered: 09/08/05
Posts: 662
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20081001/ap_on_re_us/fossett_search

SAN FRANCISCO - A hiker in a rugged part of eastern California found an ID and other items possibly belonging to Steve Fossett, the adventurer who vanished on a solo flight in a borrowed plane more than a year ago, authorities said Wednesday.
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The items were found Monday near the town of Mammoth Lakes, Inyo National Forest spokeswoman Nancy Upham said.

"We have some ID that has the name Steve Fossett," Mammoth Lakes police Investigator Crystal Schafer said. "They were turned in to us and are in our possession."

A Federal Aviation Administration identity card, a pilot ID and about $1,000 in cash were found in a bush, according to David Baumwohl, an attorney for the hiker who recovered the items.

Preston Morrow, who works in a Mammoth Lakes sporting goods store, took the items to the town's police department Wednesday, Baumwohl said.

The hiker initially didn't know who Fossett was, but once he found out, wanted to alert the Fossett family, Baumwohl said.

Michael LoVallo, a lawyer for Fossett's wife, Peggy, said, "We are aware of the reports and are trying to verify the information."

Fossett disappeared Sept. 3, 2007, after taking off in a single-engine plane borrowed from a Nevada ranch owned by hotel magnate Barron Hilton. A judge declared Fossett legally dead in February.

Baumwohl and Morrow tried to contact the law firm that handled the death declaration. When they weren't successful, they decided to turn everything over to the police, the attorney said.

Morrow also found a black Nautica pullover fleece, size XL, but left that at the scene. A quick search for airplane pieces before night fell didn't turn anything up, Baumwohl said.

Chances of finding remains are slim, said the attorney, who is a longtime resident of the mountain town and has followed similar cases.

"He's probably been eaten. This is not the first time this has happened," he said. "When people land in alpine wilderness, there's bears, mountain lions that'll eat the body."

This year's biggest search for Fossett focused on Nevada's Wassuk Range, more than 50 miles north of Mammoth Lakes. That search ended last month.

Mammoth Lakes is at an elevation of more than 7,800 feet on the eastern flank of the Sierra Nevada, where peaks top 13,000 feet.

Fossett made a fortune trading futures and options on Chicago markets. He gained worldwide fame for more than 100 attempts and successes in setting records in high-tech balloons, gliders, jets and boats. In 2002, he became the first person to circle the world solo in a balloon. He was inducted into the National Aviation Hall of Fame in July 2007.

He also swam the English Channel, completed an Ironman Triathlon, competed in the Iditarod dog sled race and climbed some of the world's best-known peaks, including the Matterhorn in Switzerland and Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania.

_________________________
Failure is not an option!
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#150629 - 10/01/08 08:14 PM Re: Fossett ID, other items found in Calif. [Re: ]
falcon5000 Offline
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Registered: 09/08/05
Posts: 662
It is interesting how the wallet and the fleece was found with no signs of blood stains from an animal attack or what have you. If you were on foot and the nights get cold there, the last thing you would do is leave behind thermals. The wallet is extra weight and can be left at the crash scene but if they found that with no wreckage, something doesn't sound right. They will probably take that point and create a circular grid search start and then probably try to acquire something, foot prints, wreckage, bones from after a bear or lion has had a dinner or something. You would think out of all the equipment we have someone would have found something.

_________________________
Failure is not an option!
USMC Jungle Environmental Survival Training PI 1985

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#150630 - 10/01/08 08:30 PM Re: Fossett ID, other items found in Calif. [Re: falcon5000]
ironraven Offline
Cranky Geek
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 09/08/05
Posts: 4642
Loc: Vermont
He took off a thermal layer at the warmth of the day, I don't see anything all that odd about it. The wallet wasn't needed, so he would have put it with the layer. I hope the site was marked, so that interested parties might try to locate a camp site.
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When a man dare not speak without malice for fear of giving insult, that is when truth starts to die. Truth is the truest freedom.

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#150632 - 10/01/08 08:40 PM Re: Fossett ID, other items found in Calif. [Re: ironraven]
Russ Online   content
Geezer

Registered: 06/02/06
Posts: 5296
Loc: SOCAL
Per the article he took a friend to the site Tuesday which was when they found the sweater. Search should start this afternoon.
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Better is the Enemy of Good Enough.
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#150633 - 10/01/08 08:46 PM Re: Fossett ID, other items found in Calif. [Re: ironraven]
falcon5000 Offline
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Registered: 09/08/05
Posts: 662
I can see taking it off during the day, but would you leave it behind? If he was going to come back and get it, wouldn't you mark the territory with something (not your wallet)? Why leave the wallet there, if he was being chased by a cat or bear, you would think there would be signs of panic, broken sticks, weeds pushed over, foot prints or something. If he was going to leave a clue you would think he would have made a flag out of the f lease and put the wallet under the flag. I don't know, with out much detail it's hard to say. Steve is a long time survivor and I would expect a lot more from him if he was alive. He's the type that is usually prepared and he has a lifetime experience in a lot of adventures. If he was alive after the crash, I think we would see more clues of his attempt to self rescue. I don't see the wind blowing that wallet there, it had to of fell from the plane or someone put it there. If an animal carried it there there would be teeth marks in the wallet and I doubt the fleece would be there in one piece either. The fleece however isn't known if it is his or not but it was in the same area.

If the wallet and fleece were there, Steve was alive (assuming they identify the fleece as his) and he probably would have activated his watch with the homing frequency. At that location it probably wouldn't have been picked up anyway but there would be tracks near by one would think.

It just sounds a little fishy that's all. We will probably find more out in the next few weeks and it may shed some light on what happened.
_________________________
Failure is not an option!
USMC Jungle Environmental Survival Training PI 1985

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#150636 - 10/01/08 09:12 PM Re: Fossett ID, other items found in Calif. [Re: falcon5000]
Russ Online   content
Geezer

Registered: 06/02/06
Posts: 5296
Loc: SOCAL
Originally Posted By: falcon5000
. . .if he was being chased by a cat or bear, you would think there would be signs of panic, broken sticks, weeds pushed over, foot prints or something. . . .
He wasn't carrying the watch. As for signs of a struggle, remember that it's been almost 13 months since Fossett took his last flight. A good snow, melt and a season of new growth would pretty much destroy any natural signs of a struggle.

My guess is whatever little is left of his remains are near where the ID and fleece pullover were found. Just a guess, it would be good for the family to get closure.
_________________________
Better is the Enemy of Good Enough.
Okay, what’s your point??

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#150638 - 10/01/08 09:16 PM Re: Fossett ID, other items found in Calif. [Re: falcon5000]
Angel Offline
Member

Registered: 06/17/06
Posts: 192
It's been more than a year, I wouldn't expect tracks to last that long. I would be surprised if they found anything. Even a plane could be overgrown in that length of time. I could be wrong though.

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#150645 - 10/01/08 10:12 PM Re: Fossett ID, other items found in Calif. [Re: falcon5000]
Nicodemus Offline
Paranoid?
Veteran

Registered: 10/30/05
Posts: 1341
Loc: Virginia, US
I seem to remember reading something after the Kim tragedy about hypothermia causing a condition that makes the sufferer feel as if they're overheated.

As mentioned previously, taking off layers to prevent one's self from overheating is another reason, and stress or exercise in any temperature could cause sweat.

I don't know that these are explanations in this case, I'm just relating the idea that there could be any number of reasons for a person to take off clothing in a survival situation.
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"Learn survival skills when your life doesn't depend on it."

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#150646 - 10/01/08 10:22 PM Re: Fossett ID, other items found in Calif. [Re: Nicodemus]
falcon5000 Offline
Addict

Registered: 09/08/05
Posts: 662
Good point, I forgot it had been that long since Steve crashed (time fly's), I guess any signs of evidence would be nil (tracks, blood,etc..) The fleece I was thinking would be near the body if he had it with him. I know as we dress in layers we shead cloths when hot and put them on when cold but the point I was trying to make is if you had warm cloths and you know it gets cold at night, you don't leave those cloths behind.

Kinda of like if you were in the desert and you had a gallon of water and drink half of it, you don't poor the other half out because you don't need it at that time.
_________________________
Failure is not an option!
USMC Jungle Environmental Survival Training PI 1985

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#150658 - 10/01/08 11:55 PM Re: Fossett ID, other items found in Calif. [Re: falcon5000]
Chris Kavanaugh Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/09/01
Posts: 3824
The article's point was a deceased victim would be consumed, not that Fosett died from a large animal attack. One of the most bizaar sights i've ever seen involved recoveriong the body of a meat butcher who succumbed to a heart attack. His J 3 Cub made a more or less intact landing. The problem was convincing several brownies to leave the area, dining on multiple packages of processed meat scattered over the crash site.
As with most mysteries, this is a new and vital clue. It's best to wait and see.

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