Body found on Mount Rainier confirmed as that of Tacoma hiker who went missing last year

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Mount Rainier (Photo:

TACOMA, Wash. (AP) — Officials confirmed Monday that the body found on Mount Rainier last week is that of a 64-year-old Tacoma man who went missing while hiking with his son last year.

The Pierce County Medical Examiner’s Office identified the remains as 64-year-old Edwin Birch, who was reported missing July 12, 2014, the News Tribune of Tacoma reported (

Officials say the cause of death is undetermined.

Birch was last seen by his son as they hiked the popular Wonderland Trail, which loops Mount Rainier. They were doing a 19-mile day hike between Box Canyon and White River, starting from opposite ends.

The son saw his father at the midpoint, but when the son got back to their vehicle and went to pick up his father, he couldn’t find him.