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Body of missing hiker found in Bell Canyon falls

Dangerously high water delays recovery efforts

SANDY — The body of a 22-year-old man who fell Sunday while hiking Bell Canyon was found on Monday.

But raging water caused by fast-melting snow due to Monday's warm temperatures prevented crews from recovering Siaosi Brown's body. Unified police say search and rescue teams will resume their efforts early Tuesday when the water levels are lower.

Brown's body was spotted Monday about 8:30 a.m. with the assistance of a Utah Department of Public Safety helicopter in the lower falls of Bell Canyon. His body was trapped on some logs in the middle of the waterfall, Unified Police Lt. Brian Lohrke said.

Because of where the body was trapped, combined with the rushing water, Lohrke said it was one of the most technical rescues the team has ever been involved with.

Brown, from Taylorsville, was hiking with two friends in Bell Canyon Sunday. He was above the first waterfall and attempting to cross a portion of the stream by jumping across it when he slipped, fell in and was swept away.

Search and rescue teams looked for him in the dark late Sunday night before being forced to call off the search. Sandy and Unified fire crews also responded to the canyon to assist.

About 100 friends and family members of Brown gathered about 5 a.m. Monday to assist in the search. Others posted tributes on social media after news spread that his body had been found.

"I love my family and don't know what I would do without them. Waking up today and hearing the heartbreaking news about Siaosi Brown breaks my heart. He was seriously the life of the party. My heart hurts for his family," one person wrote.

"He was a GREAT person, example, cousin and friend to my kids, especially my daughter," wrote another. "I know you're dancing in heaven for our grandparents my dear cousin Siaosi. … thankful for the gospel and the Plan of Salvation. … May we ever put our trust in the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ … till we meet again."

Another relative commented on the phrase Brown kept on his Facebook profile, "Trust in God's timing."

"Trusting in God's timing can be confusing and painful, but it can be done," she posted. "As we hold our family a little tighter today and tonight, may we think of their example and strength, and trust in our Father in Heaven. How grateful I am to know for sure that #FamiliesAreForever and that we will all see each other again, no matter how short our lives on earth are."

"I didn't know Siaosi Brown very well, but the few times I was around him he was always a fun, humble and most importantly kind-hearted individual. The world needs more people like him," another man posted on Facebook.

Another woman called Brown,"The most kind hearted, ambitious, adventurous, caring, God-loving man I know. I will never forget all the times we talked, the laughs we've shared. From being an entrepreneur to being married in the temple. You served the Lord very well down here and I know you'll be doing work up there in His kingdom."

On a GoFundMe account set up Monday afternoon by the Kansas Wichita Mission noted that Brown, "was an outstanding missionary, a remarkable mission leader, and a true friend to all of us. He had a great vision of the Lord's work and now has the opportunity to continue doing missionary work in the spirit world. I'm sure he is fully engaged and extremely happy as he teaches and testifies of the atonement and the great plan of happiness to those precious spirits who are in prison and have long awaited his foreordained arrival.

"We love you Siaosi and are so grateful for your love and example to each of us," the link stated.