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Missing Texas physician found dead in Grand Canyon National Park

GRAND CANYON NATIONAL PARK, Ariz. -- Searchers in Grand Canyon National Park found a body believed to be a Texas physician who went missing after she hiked into the canyon with two children who were later found safe, officials said Thursday.

The body was discovered Wednesday on the north side of the Colorado River, about three-quarters of a mile from the Phantom Ranch lodge at the bottom of the canyon.

The cause of death was not immediately known but there was no indication of foul play, park spokeswoman Emily Davis said.

Officials were working to determine if it was 38-year-old Sarah Beadle, who had hiked into the canyon along South Kaibab Trail with two children, ages 10 and 11, Davis said.

Beadle, of Fort Worth, Texas, was reported missing on Tuesday. She is the mother of one of the children, and the other is a nephew or niece, Davis said.

CBS Dallas/Fort Worth reports Beadle had reservations to stay at Phantom Ranch on Tuesday. She never arrived.

On social media, Beadle's husband Scott confirmed her death, saying that during a hike one of the children was suffering from heat exhaustion and they ran out of water. His Facebook post reads in part: "Sarah left Laura and Evan in a safe location while she went to get water and some help. Somewhere along the trail, she made a wrong turn and got lost."

Davis said she did not know how Beadle and the children became separated. Those details are part of an investigation by the National Park Service and the Coconino County Medical Examiner.

Beadle is an emergency physician at Baylor Emergency Medical Center in Keller, a Fort Worth suburb.

Park officials described her as an experienced hiker who had trekked in the Grand Canyon previously.

High temperatures at Phantom Ranch during the summer routinely top 100 degrees. There is no potable water available along the South Kaibab Trail between the South Rim trailhead and Phantom Ranch or even creek water to use for cooling, said Jeff Schwartz, a ranger who works in the inner canyon.

Schwartz said rangers advise hikers to hike in the morning or evening when temperatures are milder and there's more shade.

It's not uncommon to have one or two deaths a year primarily due to heat or dehydration, Schwartz said.

"The environment down there is much less forgiving during the summertime," he said.

One of Beadle's brothers, Charles Lawrence Springer, said she was visiting national parks with the children and had previously been in Yellowstone National Park.

He declined to provide more information.

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