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Yosemite ordeal over
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The beautiful wilderness of Yosemite National Park turned into a nightmare for a Ceres woman who broke bones in a 35-foot fall and endured three days as rescue helicopters skipped over her multiple times.

Jessica Rose Garcia, 23, of Ceres, sustained major injuries during her lone hike near the Wawona Hotel on Saturday, Oct. 6. When she failed to turn up for work the next morning, park rangers called her relatives in the Valley and rescue parties kicked into gear employing helicopters, dogs and horses.

She was found on Tuesday afternoon, Oct. 9, after rangers stumbled upon her wallet and ID which fell out of her pocket before she fell in steep terrain nearly two miles near the hotel. Garcia was rushed to a Fresno hospital where she underwent surgeries for a broken pelvis and femur and a fractured spine, and treatment for dehydration.

Garcia told relatives that she went on a hike but slipped for a short distance. As she tried to regain her footing, she fell down a 35-foot bone-shattering drop. She laid for the next three days, partially paralyzed from her spinal injuries. At one point, Garcia dragged herself to the cover of a bush by sole use of her arms.

The Johansen High School graduate recalls hearing rescue helicopters pass over the area six separate times but workers were unable to spot her as she was dressed in green and brown uniform clothing. She also could not flail her arms because of the pain she suffered.

As fate would have it, Garcia was carrying a cell phone but was unable to pick up a signal to call for help.

Garcia worked in Yosemite since the summer.

The family is collecting money to help pay for her mounting medical bills. Donations are being accepted into a trust fund set up at Bank of the West branches.