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Bee-stung man who fell off cliff IDd

Oct. 31, 2012 at 9:27 AM  |  Updated Oct. 31, 2012 at 10:02 AM   |   Comments

PHOENIX, Oct. 31 (UPI) -- A hiker who died while trying to escape a swarm of bees in an Arizona canyon has been identified by officials as Joshua Ruzsa, 19.

Ruzsa and two companions were hiking Camelback Mountain Monday when he fell 60 feet from a cliff face, KPHO-TV, Phoenix, reported Tuesday evening.

The three young men had gone off the trail and were free-climbing the face of a cliff in Ice Box Canyon when they were swarmed by bees, said Capt. Scott McDonald, a spokesman for the Phoenix Fire Department.

The two other climbers found a small crevasse and covered their faces with their hands. Ruzsa was attempting to escape the insects by climbing higher up the cliff when he fell, McDonald said.

Denis Ruzsa, Joshua's father, said Tuesday the men were training for boot camp.

Joshua Ruzsa's companions were rescued by helicopter. They were hospitalized in stable condition Tuesday night.

Ruzsa was pronounced dead at the scene.

Denis Ruzsa said one of the men was stung about 300 times, while the other was stung more than 1,000 times.

A firefighter who assisted in the rescue also was stung. He was expected to be OK, KPHO said.

© 2012 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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