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Update: Missing Hunter's Body Found

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Update: Missing Hunter's Body Found

CREATED Sep. 25, 2013 - UPDATED: Sep. 28, 2013

There is new information about the Alaskan man who went missing while hunting with a man from Grand Ledge.

Garrett Hagen's body was found in a canal shortly after midnight Thursday. He went missing after he left with Adrian Knopps. He left after they had killed a bear and went to find a bigger boat, but never returned.

Knopps spent the week trying to survive in the wilderness before he was rescued by the Coast Guard.  


The Coast Guard has suspended the search for the second of two hunters who went missing in the Alaskan wilderness more than a week ago.

Garrett Hagen was last seen heading down a river in a seven-foot skiff with the carcass of a bear he and Adrian Knopps of Grand Ledge had killed.

The Coast Guard and volunteers spent 73 hours searching 514 square miles before stopping this morning.

Knopps was rescued over the weekend after spending eight days waiting for Hagen to come back.

Last night he told us he had accepted the fact he was going to die shortly before the helicopter showed up.

He went back out to look for Hagen.
 


 

Adrian Knopps spent eight days waiting for his hunting partner to return after they killed a bear.

But he never came back.

Adrian Knopps, 51, from Grand Ledge and Garrett Hagen, 25, from Alaska were bear hunting near Ketchikan in Southeast Alaska.

The two men had successfully caught a grizzly bear just a couple days into the trip.

Hagen set out on their small boat to take the freshly caught game back to their main boat and had planned to come back to retrieve Knopps, but never did.

For eight days Knopps said he had to look within himself to find the strength to carry on.

"You have to want to live," Knopps said. "I knew they had to find me before they found my friend and I had to be able to tell them what went on."

Knopps said during all that time he never sat down and never slept and survived eating only a few granola bars. He also suffered severe hypothermia.

"It rained for seven days, for three days winds blew between 50 and 80 mph and there was no shelter," he said. "I knew what I had to do to stay alive for the moment and did what I did."

The coast guard rescued Knopps Sunday and rushed him to a nearby hospital in Ketchikan.

Knopps' parents are thankful to know he's alright, but his mother Alphie said it's also bittersweet.

"We find it really hard to be totally joyful," she said. "We can be happy because our own one is okay, but we feel for Garrett's family."

She went on to say the entire ordeal has given Adrian a new perspective on life.

"He said 'I've learned on lesson for sure: never give up hope,'" she said.

Meanwhile, Hagen is still missing. Lt. Ryan Erickson with the coast guard said Tuesday they had found another one of their missing vessels, the smaller skiff which is what Hagen was using to transport the bear they caught when he disappeared.

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