On Monday, September 12, Great Smoky Mountains National Park Rangers were notified by Swain County 911 of a medical emergency at the Newfound Gap parking lot near the North Carolina/Tennessee state line at approximately 1:55 p.m.
Marguerite Root, age 85, of Canal Winchester, Ohio fell approximately eight to nine feet from where she was sitting on a parking lot guard wall to a lower stone walkway. Ms. Root and her family were taking pictures with a view of the mountains in the background when she fell backwards off the rock wall to the stone walkway below.
Park Rangers and Cherokee Tribal EMS responded to the scene and provided patient care. Ms. Root never regained consciousness and was transported to the Cherokee Tribal Hospital in Cherokee, NC where she was pronounced dead.