Yosemite Cold Cases


Not only is Yosemite National Park full of beauty and visitors it is also a place full of mysteries. 

Millions of people pass through the gates of the park every year. 

On your next visit to the park, or any national park, there is a list rangers want you to be aware of. 

It is the list of people who entered the park and never left. 
“David went Memorial Day morning,” says Susan Quinn. “He left and he was just going to go up and come back he was just that kind of guy.”

The last time Susan Quinn saw her son was in 1998.  

“I brought a picture of David taken not very long before he went missing,” she says. 

David Morrison was from Fresno and a graduate of Hoover High.

He was a chef in San Francisco 20 years ago. 

It was Memorial Day weekend when David and a group of friends went to Yosemite to enjoy the outdoors and get away from the city like many others do.

“That Monday David decided he needed to meet the challenge of hiking up there before he went home.”

He left his group and hiked up to Yosemite’s iconic Half Dome, that was the last time anyone ever heard from him.

“I came up early the next morning.”

Quinn and her family spent the week in the park with search and rescue, but nothing came up.  

“At the end of the week on Friday they ended the search,” she added.

She along with others came back several times to search on their own, but nothing was found.

“Nothing has ever been found that located where he died or what happened to him.”

David’s story has gone cold and his case is not the only one.

“When someone goes missing or there is some sort of crime that happens and it is not solved it goes into what we call the cold case file,” says Park Ranger Scott Gediman.

Scott Gediman from Yosemite says all of these cases are still active and they are not going anywhere until they investigators from the park find out what happened.  

The oldest one on the list dates back to 1969.

There are more than two dozen cold cases on the list from people who have gone missing to unsolved homicides..

Yosemite National Park and Grand Canyon are the most popular parks on the list.

“These cases are still active, we are not actively doing stuff everyday,” he says. “But they are active and there are things that we want to remind our rangers and park visitors that these things are still out there.” 

He says its good for visitors to know this lists exists. 

“I see cases where 10 years later something might be found, it could be a piece of clothing, it could be a shoe it could be something that could bring some sort of resolution.”

If visitors come across something in the wilderness Gediman says visitors should not take it with them, but the information should be given to the Investigative Services branch.

“I think we think he fell,” says Quinn. 

For every person on the list their is a family still looking for answers.

“He had a little fanny pack in it was his credit card, we always thought some day one of those things would be found,” says Quinn. “I guess in my heart I thought some day that is going to show up, somebody is going to find it, but then they would have to know to turn it in and that is the difference.”

Quinn travels to Yosemite and hike to a small memorial she placed near Half Dome. 

David died in a place he would have wanted to be.

To see the complete list of national park cold cases click here

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