Hiker on Appalachian Trail in Maine Found Dead in Tent
The body of Jeffrey Aylward, 63, of Plymouth, Massachusetts was found shortly after 10:00 Monday morning by Game Warden Kyle Hladik. Aylward’s family reported him missing to Warden Service on Saturday evening, August 3rd.
Since learning of his disappearance on August 3rd, game wardens had hiked into lean-to and sign in stations along the AT in that region to distribute information regarding Aylward in hopes of hikers may have seen or talked with Aylward.
Hikers in the area did reported a lone tent and Warden Hladik investigated knowing of Aylward’s disappearance. Aylward was located deceased in his tent about 50 yards off the AT which was visible from the trial. Aylward was about 2/10ths of a mile west of Route 17 near the popular destination known as the Height of Land. Game wardens have no reason to suspect Aylward’s death is suspicious. Aylward did have a history of recent health issues.
Family had not heard from Aylward since a text he sent on the afternoon of Tuesday, July 23rd. Aylward’s family had developed a pattern of bringing him fresh supplies about every eight days. When he no longer provided them with communication, they became concerned and called for help.
Jeffrey Aylward began his easterly hike on July 1st at Pinkham Notch near the Maine and New Hampshire border with a destination of Mt. Katahdin. Jeffrey Aylward’s trail name was “Dusty Pilgrim”, for those who might have encountered him on the trail.
Game wardens are working with the Medical Examiner’s Office and a local funeral home as Aylward’s body is transported off the AT.
The Maine Warden Service wants to thank the AT community and the many hikers in the region who assisted in helping locate Jeffrey Aylward.