Family and friends mourn NC man who died in fall from waterfall

CEDAR MOUNTAIN, N.C.  — A North Carolina mother’s “soul is crushed” after her son died in a fall from a waterfall on Saturday afternoon.

Daniel Howard Schoren Jr., 20, of Mill Springs died after he fell from High Falls in the DuPont State Forest, the Transylvania County Sheriff’s Office says.

Sheriff David Mahoney says Schoren attempted to climb the face of the waterfall, disregarding a “No Rock Climbing” sign.

Schoren in a Facebook photo
Schoren in a Facebook photo

Schoren lost his footing and fell about 50 feet to the base of the waterfall around 4:20 p.m. Saturday, officials said.

On Sunday, family and friends posted dozens of comments on social media about Schoren, who just Saturday afternoon posted a Facebook video of himself and family members as they hiked in DuPont State Forest only hours before his deadly fall.

Schoren’s mother, Julie Schoren, posted on her son’s Facebook page on Sunday.

“I ask you all to pray for God’s comfort to be with us in the moments, days and weeks that lay ahead of us,” mom Julie Schoren wrote.

“I love and miss you son, and will do so for the rest of my days. My soul is crushed,” she added.

Schoren was a 2013 graduate of Polk County High School and had studied Carpentry at Isothermal Community College in Spindale, according to his Facebook profile.

“I lost my brother today. Not in name but in spirit. He was the best friend a guy could ask for. Always had a kind word. And family was always his most prized possession,” wrote Thomas Langley.

The Cedar Mountain Fire Department responded to the scene on Saturday.

“My heart is aching tonight, the world lost a great guy that I had a privilege of knowing,” Allison Mann wrote on Facebook.

“Daniel Schoren Jr. was one of the most kindhearted, beyond hilarious person I have ever met. It doesn’t seem real at all,” she added.

Officials say this is the third death on waterfalls throughout Transylvania County in the past month.

In March 2015, another man survived after falling 50 feet from the waterfall.

High Falls, a 125-foot waterfall, is located along the Little River in the forest.

The 10,473-acre forest was used to shoot scenes from the 2012 movie The Hunger Games.

— The Associated Press and WSPA-TV contributed to this report

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