Fatal flight from Kagel Mountain

A tragic hang gliding accident of unknown cause took the life of a West Hollywood man, Markus Michael Albert Schaedler, age 59, on Saturday, May 9. The deadly accident occurred in Sylmar.

Schaedler and a group of hang gliders initially launched from Kagel Mountain, a popular launch point for many hang gliding clubs. Around 6:20 p.m., Schaedler’s hang gliding group reported him missing, when he did not show up at a rendezvous point.

Dead at the scene

Investigators later found Schaedler, a little after 7 p.m., in a ravine near Little Tujunga Canyon Road, his glider wrecked on the rocks. Schaedler was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash by Los Angeles Fire Department firefighters.

How did it happen?

News sources were not able to say whether Schaedler was a veteran hang glider. His fateful launch from Kagel Mountain, the “home launch” site of one of California’s most prominent hang gliding clubs, ended in death, but investigation will be necessary to reveal the cause of the accident, whether it was carelessness/operator error or some other cause, such as defective equipment.

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