24-Year-Old Hiker Who Died was Recent Student at Mt. San Jacinto College

Vladislav Lesnik grew up in Russia and attended West Valley High in Hemet.

A 24-year-old hiker who was found deceased Friday morning near the Santa Rosa Hills southeast of Hemet was a recent student at Mt. San Jacinto College.

Vladislav Lesnik fell ill while walking a trail southwest of Simpson Park on Thursday, prompting a search that included members of the Riverside Mountain Rescue Unit and trained search dogs, Sgt. W. Clear of the sheriff's Hemet Station said.

Lesnik, who grew up in Russia and attended West Valley High in Hemet, was with another hiker in his mid-20s when he began experiencing unspecified medical problems, according to Clear.

Lesnik stayed on the trail while his companion went back to Simpson Park to get help, Clear said.

Deputies were notified of a mssing hiker about 5:40 p.m. Thursday, Clear said.

"The Riverside Mountain Rescue Unit, Desert Search and Rescue Unit, along with search and rescue dogs were activated and responded to search for the missing hiker," Clear said.

Due to his unfamiliarity with the terrain, the unidentified companion was unable to lead rescue personnel back to where he left Lesnik, Clear said.

"On the following morning of January 13, 2012, at approximately 7:30 a.m., search teams located the deceased missing hiker," Clear said.

Foul play was not suspected in Lesnik's death. The cause of death was being investigated by the county coroner.

Lesnik's Facebook page indicates he was from Ulan-Ude, a city in the south central Siberian republic of Buryatia. The region's attractions include Lake Baikal, the oldest, deepest lake on Earth.

His favorite sport was soccer, and he supported FC Lokomitiv of Moscow and Manchester United.

Anyone with further information was urged to contact the Hemet Station at (951) 791-3400.


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