Two bodies pulled from a mangled car that had been trapped for weeks in the middle of a treacherous Kings River gorge in Central California were confirmed to be those of two missing Thai students, the Fresno County Sheriff’s Office said.
The bodies of University of South Florida exchange students Pakapol Chairatnathrongporn, 28, and Thiwadee Saengsuriyarit, 24, were recovered Friday and identified through fingerprints over the long weekend, said sheriff’s spokesman Tony Botti.
The car, a red Hyundai Sonata, had plummeted 500 feet after plowing through a guardrail on Highway 180 on July 26, authorities said. Since then, the smashed vehicle has rested on a pile of boulders amid raging waters.
Search-and-rescue crews from the Fresno County Sheriff’s Office pulled the sedan to the riverbank Friday, then retrieved the bodies from the car, Botti said.
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