POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y. — A New York college student died Monday after falling from a cliff while hiking with a group of friends in Hasbrouck Park, according to police.
In a statement distributed to students, SUNY New Paltz President Donald Christian identified the student as Katherine Vollmer of Rochester, a visual arts major.
The 20-year-old was a member of an “unsanctioned hiking group” that was exploring caves and trails in the area, according Kingston police. The group started their hike around 6:30 p.m. Monday and were returning to their cars when Vollmer slipped and fell. Police said the group became lost and ended up at the edge of a cliff.
Vollmer fell about 150 feet, police said. The department was called to the scene around 10 p.m. Monday, where they located the group of students in the hiking area.
The location where Vollmer fell was only accessible by an experienced rope team, according to police. Due to lack of light and weather conditions the rescue waited until Tuesday morning.
Vollmer suffered from severe trauma and was pronounced dead on the scene.
In a statement Christian extended his condolences to Vollmer’s family and friends.
“It is with sadness that I share the news of the passing of undergraduate student Katherine Vollmer, 20,” said Christian. “…We extend our deepest sympathy to Katherine’s family and friends and to the students and staff who knew her.”
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