Tourist Missing After Landslide

A California woman hiking with friends and relatives in a tropical gorge is still missing, and authorities consider her the eighth person killed by a weekend landslide.

Searchers were not trying to locate or retrieve the unidentified 24-year-old's body from Sacred Falls State Park because of the high risk of another landslide.

"I'm not willing to risk our personnel for what may be a body retrieval," Honolulu Fire Chief Attilio Leonardi said. "There is nothing more we can do without putting our people in harm's way."

Authorities learned of the woman's disappearance from her boyfriend, who is hospitalized with a broken leg. The two were side by side when the wave of rocks and trees washed over them. The woman hasn't been seen since.

The search effort first broke off Monday morning when military dogs and a chopper using heat-seeking cameras failed to detect any more bodies in the bottom of the narrow gorge, carpeted with debris from the cliffside.

Crews returned in the afternoon upon hearing the woman was still missing, but soon called off the operation.

The park has been indefinitely closed, as state geologists warned of the potential for more landslides like the one on Mother's Day that injured dozens more at one of Hawaii's most spectacular hiking spots.

"When we were up there this morning, several rocks came down and went into the pool and one came down between the other geologist and myself," state geologist Glenn Bauer said.

The hikers were sunning themselves near a 90-foot waterfall Sunday afternoon when tons of boulders, some the size of small cars, ricocheted down into the narrow valley from 850 feet above.

Six bodies were recovered, four females and two males, and another man died of his injuries Tuesday.

The Air Force and Honolulu medical examiner identified some of them as Air Force Master Sgt. Scott Huling, 36, stationed at Hickam Air Force Base near Honolulu; Danielle Williams, 7, also of Hickam; 29 year-old Mark Johnson of Los Angeles, his 24 year-old sister Jennifer, and Aaron Bann, 31, of Placentia, Calif.

Two other female victims were identified only as being from the mainland. Twelve people remain hospitalized.

"There were bodies everywhere," said David Pahk, a volunteer with the Sacred Falls Assistance Program that hands out bottled water and sunscreen to often-unprepared hikers.

He and a dozen others worked frantically to save the life of a young girl, carrying her out the trail on a stretcher and sharing CPR efforts. "She just died in our hands," he said.

The park in the lushly forested Koolau Range is about 30 miles north of Honolulu and across the road from the Pacific Ocean.

It long has been considered one of Hawaii's most popular natural attractions, with 56,000 annual visitors. It also is one of its most dangerous, with at least a dozen deaths since 1970.