Missing mountain biker found dead in ravine

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by JOBIN PANICKER

Bio | Email | Follow: @jobinpnews

WFAA

Posted on June 24, 2014 at 6:28 PM

FLOWER MOUND — A missing mountain biker was found dead in a ravine northeast of Twin Coves Marina Monday, two days after he was reported missing in Murrell Park near Grapevine Lake, Flower Mound police said.

Rescue teams and volunteers scoured 23 miles of North Shore Trail through thick brush along the lake in a desperate search for Wesley Hixson.

On Monday, family members got the news they had dreaded.

“It’s heartbreaking,” said Arlington Fire Department spokesman Lt. Lee Tovar.

Hixson’s body was found in a ravine not far from his bike and the path. Tovar said it was a place that had been previously searched several times.

“It’s very rugged, steep, and rocky terrain," said Flower Mound police Capt. Richard Brooks. "It’s a very difficult environment to search."

The news prompted hundreds of volunteers to offer help. Maribeth Yarbrough came on Saturday.

“Tons of other people... I mean people that didn’t even know him," she said. "It was such an outpouring. It was just such a tragic thing."

Nearly 100 off-duty firefighters from the Arlington Fire Department — where Hixson's father works — joined in the search.

“It shows we are a strong, supportive family," Tovar said. "Not only about the character of Wesley, but his father, too."

Flower Mound police said Hixson and three friends hopped on their bikes together Saturday. They broke off into two groups of two when trouble struck.

"While the two groups of two were riding, Mr. Hixson had a crash on his bike," Brooks said. "He told his riding partner that he was fine, that he could continue riding."

They did continue riding, but sometime later Saturday morning, they separated.

His riding partner on the trails told police Hixson may have had a head injury. The Tarrant County Medical Examiner's Office will determine the cause of death.

Hixson is survived by a wife and two children under six years old.

E-mail jpanicker@wfaa.com

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