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Man who died last week at Palouse Falls seriously injured before drowning

UPDATED: Thu., May 17, 2018, 10:17 p.m.

A Yakima Valley man who who died last week at Palouse Falls State Park was seriously injured before drowning, according to Franklin County coroner Dan Blasdel.

Noble Stoneman, a recent Washington State University graduate, fell off a steep ledge above the falls, hit a rock and was unconscious before hitting the water, Blasdel said.

Stoneman, 26, fell about 100 feet when the ground beneath him crumbled, witnesses said.

“When he hit that ledge right above the water, he did fracture some vertebrae and a broken right ankle,” Blasdel said. “If he had survived, he would have been a quadriplegic.”

Stoneman, a 2011 Naches Valley High graduate, is the third person to die at Palouse Falls in a year and the fourth since 2015.


 

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Then and Now: Comstock Park

James M. Comstock, born in 1838 in Wisconsin, arrived in Spokane in time to witness the great fire of 1889 and start Spokane Dry Goods with Robert Paterson. It became the Crescent, Spokane’s premier department store for a century. He also worked in real estate and owned other businesses. He served a term as Spokane mayor, starting in 1899. James Comstock died in 1918.