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As It Was: Man Falls Over Cliff, Walks 28 Miles for Help

In June 1934, Ed Huntington was badly injured in eastern Curry County and had to walk 28 miles through the wilderness for help.

Huntington had been prospecting alone when he slipped from a cliff and plunged 50 feet to the rocks below.  When he regained consciousness, he assessed his injuries: head throbbing, eyes swelling shut, and a painful and uselessly limp left arm.  Huntington blindly felt his way back to camp, where he applied warm water packs to his eyes and cooked a potato soup.

Three days after his fall, Huntington began a slow descent to a creek bed and followed its rugged course to Will Tolman’s cabin at the Chetco River.  From there, he hastened to the nearest ranger station and telephoned for assistance.   State police troopers responded immediately, hiking in to take Huntington out to their parked automobile.  From there, it was a long trip over rough forest roads.

At the Gold Beach hospital, an examination revealed fractured lower and upper jaws and skull, lost teeth, and two fractures of his left arm.

Although Huntington complained of hallucinations that buzzards were circling above him, full recovery was predicted.

Source: "Man Badly Hurt Walks 28 Miles." Curry County Reporter, 7 June 1934, p. 1+.

Laurel earned a Bachelor’s degree in Geography from Humboldt State. Her research efforts as a volunteer for the Curry Historical Society produced numerous newsletter articles and exhibits and earned her a reputation as a seasoned local history buff. Laurel is the author of "Renderings from the Gold Beach Pioneer Cemetery", a 50-page booklet containing a walking tour and snippets about the lives and times of folks buried there. She is also a contributing writer to Oregon Coast Magazine.