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Missing hiker's body found in Canary Islands ravine

PUBLISHED: 20:20 16 August 2007 | UPDATED: 14:37 07 September 2010

Mark Harris

Mark Harris

By Marijke Peters THE FAMILY of a Muswell Hill hiker who went missing in the Canary Islands have spoken of their devastation after his body was discovered at the foot of a ravine. Mark Harris had been walking on the Caldera de Taburiente route in La Palma

By Marijke Peters

THE FAMILY of a Muswell Hill hiker who went missing in the Canary Islands have spoken of their devastation after his body was discovered at the foot of a ravine.

Mark Harris had been walking on the Caldera de Taburiente route in La Palma when he disappeared on August 3, days after celebrating his 57th birthday.

Rescue services launched a search after he failed to meet his wife Helen and friends at a prearranged point and he was finally found on August 10.

Son Josh Harris said: "For us, life without Mark will be unimaginable.

"His loyalty, wisdom, quirky sense of fun and talent for sharing his enthusiasm for the unusual are only a few of qualities that made Mark a true gem. He is simply irreplaceable, a treasure that everyone who knew him will miss dreadfully. We cannot begin to express our sadness and sense of loss."

"We as a family would like to thank the Guardia Civil and the people of La Palma for their unstinting help and support and for everything that they have done for us in our time of distress."

The Caldera de Taburiente is in an area of natural beauty and is well known among walkers for its gorges and ravines. It is believed Mr Harris may have slipped on pine needles after he went down a small track recommended in his guidebook.

He had recently been appointed director of quality and standards at the Parole Board and was due to join the team after his holiday in the Canary Islands with family and friends.

Chief executive officer Christine Glenn said: "The Parole Board has now received the very sad news from the family of Mark Harris that his body was found by search teams in a mountainous area of La Palma.

"I know that everyone at the Board will join with me in sending our deepest regrets to Mark's family for their tragic loss."

Mr Harris' body was cremated in La Palma and his family are currently organising a memorial service in London. He had three children.

broadway@hamhigh.co.uk

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