Man ‘Died A Hero’ Trying To Save Girlfriend Who Slipped Into Waterfall

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Dana Abizaid Contributor
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The bodies of a man and woman who had gone missing near Yosemite National Park in California were recovered by emergency crews Wednesday.

Search and rescue teams found the bodies of Monica Ledesma, 34 and James Hall, 35, near Angel Falls, according to Fox11 reportedAfter rescuers were informed that an unresponsive woman was seen in the water near Bass Lake, emergency crews found Ledesma’s body and some of Hall’s belongings. (RELATED: Tennessee Officials Recover Bodies Of Father, 9-Year-Old Son After Jet Ski Fatally Strikes Barge)

“James died a hero trying to save his girlfriend Monica,” Hall’s family said on a fundraising page. “Unfortunately, they both were taken from us.”

Hall, whose body was discovered nearby, and Ledesma were in a relationship, and Hall was heralded as a hero who apparently tried to save his girlfriend after she slipped into the falls, the outlet reported.

A fundraising page established for Hall’s family said, “James died a hero trying to save his girlfriend Monica. Unfortunately, they both were taken from us.”

A vigil held for the couple attracted dozens of friends, coworkers and family, KFSN-TV reported.

“This may be the hardest day of our lives,” Hall’s mother told KFSN-TV. “But it’s here for a reason, and I think it’s in the name of love.”

“Not only were they kind and considerate, and took care of us old folks, took care of the young folks,” Nancy O’Hara, a friend of the couple, told the outlet. “Their sense of humor. Especially those are things when we you get older, you really need in your life.”

Ledesma’s mother told KFSN-TV that her daughter had two children, an 8-year-old son and a 14-year-old daughter.

The Madera County Sheriff’s Department said in a statement that the water near Angel Falls “is extremely swift, and deadly cold… When heading into rivers and streams, always take precautions, such as wearing a life vest, bringing a life preserver with you, and following all river/stream closures.”

The department did not indicate the couple’s cause of death, Fox News Digital reported.