Teen dies after hiking fall


Jonathan Michael McKenzie of Simpsonville fell to his death Sunday after he fell while attempting to refill water bottles near Mill Creek Falls at Table Rock State Park.

Mill Creek Falls is situated within Table Rock State Park and is located about three miles from the trailhead.

PICKENS COUNTY — A slip and fall on Sunday at Mill Creek Falls located within Table Rock State Park resulted in the death of a young hiker, officials said.

Pickens County emergency crews responded along with personnel from the Pickens County Sheriff’s Office to help recover the body of Jonathan Michael McKenzie, 16, of 301 Weaver Lane in Simpsonville. Various news agencies were reporting that he was a student at Mauldin High School.

According to the Pickens County Sheriff’s Office, McKenzie was hiking the trails at Table Rock State Park when he stopped to refill water bottles at a waterfall. McKenzie lost his footing and fell from the waterfall.

Officials estimated he fell more than 50 feet.

The trail he and his 16-year-old female companion were hiking was located about three miles from the trailhead.

A call to report the accident was received at 3:45 p.m. and PCSO officers, along with other first responders throughout Pickens County, arrived to initiate the search.

“The sheriff’s office has interviewed the witness and the investigation is still ongoing pending the final results of the autopsy,” the Pickens County Sheriff’s Office said in a statement. “Preliminary investigation has not produced any signs of foul play and the incident appears to be an accident absent the discovery of any new information.”

Emergency crews located McKenzie and transported him down the mountain by foot where he was pronounced dead. His body was taken to Greenville Hospital System for an autopsy.

According to a release from the Pickens County Coroner’s office, McKenzie’s death is being ruled as a slip and fall accident pending the final autopsy results. Results were not available at press time.

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