Investigators: French hikers sacrificed life for son

ALAMOGORDO, N.M. (KRQE) – More details are being released after two French hikers were found dead in New Mexico.

The couple who died at White Sands sacrificed themselves for their son, according to investigators.

42-year-old David Steiner and his 51-year-old wife, Ornella Steiner were found dead last week along a five mile long trail. Officials also found their 9-year-old son alive but dehydrated.

Authorities now say the couple did have two small bottles of water when they set out on their hike in the 100 degree weather, and gave their son two sips for every one they took. They say he was in surprisingly good condition when they found him, considering the circumstances.

It’s unclear if the couple became disoriented, or just couldn’t handle the long journey.

Park Rangers conducting a routine search found the mother’s body first. They took a look at her camera and found pictures of her son and husband. They then followed footprints and that’s when they located the other two. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Users who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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