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St. Landry Parish doctor dies while on hiking trip at the Grand Canyon

Dr. Hatfield.jpg
Posted at 9:02 AM, Jul 16, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-16 17:04:52-04

A St. Landry Parish doctor died on Thursday while on a multi-day hiking trip at the Grand Canyon National Park.

Park Officials say that 44-year-old Rodney Jason Hatfield of Washington was returning from a hike in Phantom Ranch when he began having trouble hiking up the Bright Angel Trail.

After reaching a rest house, officials say that Hatfield became unresponsive and resuscitation efforts were administered

Those efforts were unsuccessful and Hatfield was pronounced dead by rangers.

An investigation into the incident is being conducted by the NPS in coordination with the Coconino County Medical Examiner.

Hatfield was a doctor within the Opelousas General Health System.

Opelousas General Hospital released the following statement on Friday:

"Dr. Hatfield was an excellent physician, husband, father, and friend. Our OGHS Family is deeply saddened by this loss and we will miss him dearly," said Dr. Kenneth Cochran, President and CEO of Opelousas General Health System.

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