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Crews Searching Yosemite For Missing Hawthorne Man

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Missing hiker George Penca. (credit: National Parks Service)

Missing hiker George Penca. (credit: National Parks Service)

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YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK (AP) — Rescue crews are searching a section of Yosemite National Park for a Southern California man who went out on a day hike and never came back.

A park spokeswoman says George Penca was last seen Friday as he hiked the Upper Yosemite Fall trail in Yosemite Valley with about 20 people from his church.

Park spokeswoman Kari Cobb says when the church members finished their hike, the 30-year-old Hawthorne man was not with them.

Because the group had dispersed during the hike, Cobb says that the other hikers assumed that Penca had returned ahead of them. A missing person’s report was filed around 9 p.m. Friday.

Cobb described the trail that Penca disappeared on as a “popular and well-maintained trail.”

Yosemite National Park Search and Rescue teams, as well as rescue teams from adjoining counties, are taking part in the search.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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