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Michigan DNR rescues woman dangling on 70-foot Lake Superior cliff, hanging on to tree roots

May 07, 2018 09:27AM ● Published by Editor

The cliff leading to Lake Superior where the woman was rescued. Photo courtesy of the Michigan DNR.


By Tanda Gmiter from Mlive.com - May 7, 2018


L'ANSE, MI - DNR officers made a daring rescue on a Lake Superior cliff after a young women was left dangling over the ice, hanging on only by some tree roots.

The rescue happened Thursday in Baraga County in the Upper Peninsula.

The 25-year-old woman told police she was walking to visit a friend when she stopped to go down to the lake. She put her foot over the guard rail, then lost her footing and started falling. She called 911 about 8:30 a.m. to say she was stuck on a 70-foot cliff overlooking Lake Superior.

Department of Natural Resources conservation officers David Miller and Kyle McQueer joined Michigan State Police troopers in searching for the woman, who wasn't sure of her exact location.

She was located just north of the village of L'anse, clinging to the face of the 70-foot cliff.

"Just as we passed Hannapaa road, we were flagged down by an individual who could hear someone hollering for help from somewhere down the cliff," Miller said.

Miller climbed down to hold the woman in place until she could be rescued. McQueer got a tow strap, tied one end to a tree, and threw the other end down to Miller.

"She told me she had Huntington's disease, and had very little-to-no strength in her arms and legs," Miller said. "She had been holding on to tree roots to keep her from falling the rest of the way down the cliff and onto the ice below."

Huntington's is a hereditary disease that affects the brain's nerve cells and impacts how people are able to move their bodies.

Officers from the Keweenaw Bay Indian Community and Baraga police also arrived on scene to help bring the woman back to the top of the cliff.

She was uninjured, and was taken home to her mother.

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