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Hiker who died at Zoar Valley was 2017 graduate of Hamburg High School

Posted at 4:44 PM, Jul 29, 2018
and last updated 2018-07-30 23:10:06-04

7 Eyewitness News has learned the identity of the young man who fell to his death Sunday at Zoar Valley.

Conor Long, 20, from Boston, N.Y. fell more than 70 feet while hiking. The Erie County Sheriff's Office says a group was hiking together when the victim fell into the valley around 3 p.m.

First responders used his cell phone signal to find him late Sunday afternoon. 

Officials say retrieving Long started as a rescue but was eventually moved to a recovery. Heavy rains and steep terrain made it difficult for rescuers to reach him. 

Long was at 2017 graduate of Hamburg High School and was very active at school and in his community. He served as the student representative on the Hamburg Central School Board and as Student Government President.

Hamburg Central School District Superintendent Michael Cornell said Long was an upstanding student and citizen.

"Any parent would want their son to grow up to be like Conor," Cornell said.

A GoFundMe account, set up by a friend of Long to help cover funeral expenses, surpassed its fundraising goal of $20,000 in one day. There is also a Change.org petition to name a scholarship after him. 

"Conor Long was a true stand up guy," the tribute on the page reads. "He was never in a bad mood, and he was always kind. He always did what he could to give back to his community whether it was through volunteering, or just saying hello to a stranger-so it only seems right that we as a community return the favor to his family and friends."

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