The couple Joseph Orbeso, 21, and Rachel Nguyen, 20, had not been heard from since they disappeared while hiking in the Joshua Tree National Park (JTNP,) California in July. On Sunday, however, their lifeless bodies have been found locked in a final embrace.
Although authorities are yet to provide formal identification, Joseph’s father Gilbert Orbeso reportedly said the bodies belonged to his son and his girlfriend. He told ABC7 that they found the pair locked in a final embrace.
‘I feel like we have closure. We know we found them. That was our main goal, to find them,’ Gilbert said.
The alarm that the two were missing was raised after they failed to check out of their hotel and their car was found near a trail called the “Maze Loop.”
The couple seem to have lost their way, as per reports. Their tracks showed that they had been walking in circles. They probably suffered dehydration and perished in the National Park. However, a spokeswoman for the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department said that autopsies will determine the causes of death, as well as the identification of the bodies.
Joshua Tree – due to loss of daylight yesterday, the recovery of 2 missing hikers will occur this morning. ID’s will be pending autopsies.
— SB County Sheriff (@sbcountysheriff) October 16, 2017
JTNP is known for its harsh climate, which can reach extreme temperatures especially during summer months. The park is in a remote area of California, where the Mojave and Colorado desert ecosystems meet.
Joshua Tree National Park was among the Washington Post‘s list of 10 most deadly national parks in 2014.