UPDATE 1:44 p.m. (May 31, WFXR): Roanoke County fire officials confirmed that the hiker who fell 50 feet from the McAfee Knob summit Sunday morning did not survive his injuries.

The Roanoke County Fire and Rescue Department says the hiker — identified as 23-year-old Paul Classen from the Netherlands — died at the hospital on Sunday, May 29.


ROANOKE COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — Rescue teams worked diligently to save a man who had fallen from a mountain in Roanoke County on Sunday morning.

At approximately 6 a.m., Roanoke County Fire and Rescue responded to an emergency call for a man who had fallen from the top of the mountain.

According to authorities, a man in his 20s had been climbing to the summit of McAfee Knob in the Masons Cove area of Roanoke County when he fell approximately 50 feet.

The rescue team reached the injured man shortly before 7 a.m. They rendered medical aid and then began to carry him back. Authorities reported that the terrain in the area was extremely steep and rocky.

Initial rescuers were soon joined by a wilderness medicine doctor and other rescuers who helped carry the man to an all-terrain vehicle. The vehicle then transported the man to a waiting medical helicopter that transported him to Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital. The man’s injuries were reported to be life-threatening, according to authorities.

About 30 fire and rescue personnel, and three police officers were dispatched in response to the incident. Three all-terrain vehicles were used during the rescue operation.