Former Wauconda firefighter dies after falling into Arizona canyon

A former part-time Wauconda firefighter has died in central Arizona.

Micah Austin, 43, of San Tan Valley, Arizona, died while riding in the Salt River Canyon. Gila County sheriff's police believe he got off his BMW motorcycle, slipped and fell 425 feet to his death.

His body was found by a drone in the canyon Jan. 2, a day after the motorcycle was discovered abandoned alongside a road, the Gila County sheriff's office said.

Autopsy results are not yet available.

A Texas native who later moved to Wauconda, Austin graduated from Wauconda High School in 1991. He worked for the Wauconda Fire Protection District between 1993 and 2000.

Austin moved to Arizona more than a year ago and had been working as a virtual design and construction engineer with Hensel Phelps Construction.

Visitation is scheduled for 4 to 8 p.m. Thursday at Kisselburg-Wauconda Funeral Home, 235 N. Main St. A private family gathering will follow.

Survivors include Austin's wife, his parents, three sisters and a grandmother.

Instead of flowers, contributions may be made in Austin's memory to the Backcountry Discovery Routes by calling (206) 383-6233 or visiting

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