Missing in Oregon - James Kim (CNET,TechTV)

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In summary, while watching the news this morning about a family that had been missing in Oregon, it was reported that the mother and her two children were rescued, but the father, James Kim, was still missing. It was discovered that James Kim was a CNET editor and had previously appeared on G4/TechTV cable-TV network. After trying to walk out for help, he unfortunately cut cross country, which proved to be a fatal mistake due to the rough terrain and cold temperatures. Some question why he did not have a GPS unit, while others argue that technology can give a false sense of safety. A website has been set up to support the family and there is discussion about possible liability for Google Maps in the incident. This is not
  • #1
robphy
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While watching the news this morning about the family that had been missing in Oregon: about the rescue of the mother and her two children and the continued search for the father, James Kim,
http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/story?id=2701123&page=1
http://www.cnn.com/2006/US/12/05/missing.family.ap/index.html



I said to myself "Where have I seen him before?" Then, it dawned on me...
He is a CNET editor and was one of the regular contributors to the G4/TechTV cable-tv network... in particular, the http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fresh_Gear"

(from Leo Laporte's site)
http://www.leovilletownsquare.com/fusionbb/showtopic.php?tid/15950/

Here's a video of James Kim at CNET


http://www.sfgov.org/site/police_index.asp?id=37978 (missing person report)
http://news.com.com/2300-1028_3-6140554-1.html (a map)

Let's hope they find him safe.
 
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  • #2
I hope they find him ..very soon.
 
  • #3
That's sad, I hope they find him soon. What's a CNET editor doing without a GPS car unit? (everyone has one of those these days) Or wouldn't that work in that area?
 
  • #4
The guy is an idiot and may well have essentially committed suicide. First of all, why did they ever leave pavement ? To take your family exploring in the middle of the night does not make sense. If they got lost then they should have turned around the instant the pavement ended.

Next the fool tried to walk out for help, they followed his tracks on the road for about 2 miles then HE CUT CROSS COUNTRY!

I grew up in this region(southwester Oregon), I am very familiar with the terrain, it is rough to say the least, even on a nice day the hillsides are difficult to cross, in the snow, forget it. You are going to get wet, the snow is not your nice powder, it is just a half step from water. If you play in the snow you WILL get wet, then you get cold. If you do not get dried out and warm within a few hours you are in big trouble. Now you people in the cold regions may laugh at our 5C winter temps, but if you are wet and in the cold hypothermia is inevitable.

His body may be found soon, or it may be found 10years from now or even never. The brush is thick the hill sides are steep and treacherous. I am sorry for his family.
 
  • #5
One of CNET's blogs seems to be keeping a close eye on how it develops :

http://crave.cnet.com/8301-1_105-9666094-1.html?tag=nl.e729

...they send the link in one of their newsletters. Sounds like weird screw up with unfortunate consequences.
 
  • #6
Integral said:
The guy is an idiot and may well have essentially committed suicide. First of all, why did they ever leave pavement ? To take your family exploring in the middle of the night does not make sense. If they got lost then they should have turned around the instant the pavement ended.
He was an absolute idiot, he decided to take off road short cuts in the snow where another couple got lost last winter. Absolutely brain dead to leave well marked safe roads in this kind of weather/area.
 
  • #7
Monique said:
That's sad, I hope they find him soon. What's a CNET editor doing without a GPS car unit? (everyone has one of those these days) Or wouldn't that work in that area?

Could it be that he did have a GPS and that is why he was where he was?

Technology seems to give many a false sense of safety. But the fact is you can know exactly where you are and be in BIG trouble. So he goes looking for some snow for his child to play in,... Hey I've got a GPS I can't get lost... But how does a GPS get you unstuck? You know exactly where you are, but if you car is stuck that is not much help.

According to the news they were in the Denny's in Roseburg at 8pm (That's my hometown, one of my friends married a waitress from that Denney's) heading for a hotel in Gold Beach. Gold Beach is between 3 and 4 hrs drive on crooked 2 lane roads (no freeway). I would not want to do that drive at night any time of the year...

:confused:

Why?
 
  • #8
PerennialII said:
One of CNET's blogs seems to be keeping a close eye on how it develops :

http://crave.cnet.com/8301-1_105-9666094-1.html?tag=nl.e729

...they send the link in one of their newsletters. Sounds like weird screw up with unfortunate consequences.

One hour ago that link worked, now it says it has been disconnected.. Is there news?
 
  • #9
The trouble is that people who don't live in areas like this simply can't appreciate just how dangerous it can be. I've lived here for twenty years and am still learning the do's and don'ts.
 
  • #11
When will people realize that you just don't take unplowed roads off the beaten path in snowy weather? You lose your bearing and your car gets stuck. DUH.

I hope this gets enough press to prevent some other joker from trying to take some shortcut instead of getting back on the main highway, even if it means another 30 minutes.
 
  • #12
http://www.oregonlive.com/newslogs/oregonian/index.ssf?/mtlogs/olive_oregonian_news/archives/2006_12.html#211992" is an explanition of how they got stuck. I am finding it a bit harder to blame Mr. Kim. It looks like Google Maps is the trouble.

Pull up google maps and ask for directions from Grants Pass Or to Gold Beach. You are directed to BLM roads. These are single lane roads that are not passable in the winter to anything other then a 4x4.

Could Google be liable?
 
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  • #13
How often does this sort of thing happen around here? I'm thinking that there are at least two a year.
 
  • #14
Btw, we lost one of our physics grad students on Mt. Hood. He went out for a day hike, a snow storm seemingly came out of nowhere, and I don't think they ever found the body.
 
  • #15
Integral said:
http://www.oregonlive.com/newslogs/oregonian/index.ssf?/mtlogs/olive_oregonian_news/archives/2006_12.html#211992" is an explanition of how they got stuck. I am finding it a bit harder to blame Mr. Kim. It looks like Google Maps is the trouble.

Pull up google maps and ask for directions from Grants Pass Or to Gold Beach. You are directed to BLM roads. These are single lane roads that are not passable in the winter to anything other then a 4x4.

Could Google be liable?

If Google Maps has the same disclaimer as Mapquest, probably not. Mapquest disclaimer says something like "always use common sense and verify that the roads actually exist and are passable." I remembered because when I saw it, I thought, Uh Oh, they must have gotten in trouble because some idiot following Mapquest instructions turned left when there was nothing but a hole under construction or a big tree.
 
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  • #16
I love how the stories keep changing stories. When first found, the wife said that they had been in a hurry and had decided to take two shortcuts to their destination.

Last story said that they had missed their interstate exit and they decided to take some Bear pass Road as a quicker way across instead of turning around and getting back on the right road. and then got stuck.
 
  • #17
Ivan Seeking said:
How often does this sort of thing happen around here? I'm thinking that there are at least two a year.

I don't recall it ever happening until the last 2 or 3 years. Before google there was no way of learning about these seldom traveled roads. The locals know about them and know when to use them. Now that Google (Map Quest etc. ) and GPS have started to be in common use people are getting into trouble by venturing off the beaten path and not being aware of the hazards.
 
  • #18
Asked why Kim apparently ventured into such difficult territory, Anderson said, "I'm hoping I have the opportunity to ask that question, why he did that."

Kim and his family got stuck in their 2005 Saab station wagon after venturing up Bear Camp Road, a treacherous, winding route, during a storm on the night of Nov. 25. At an elevation of around 3,000 feet, about 50 miles from their intended destination on the coast, the Kims turned off onto the gravel road, drove about 3 miles and got stuck.

It would have been a harrowing drive. Bear Camp Road is covered with snow, with barely room for one car in places. In some spots there are sheer cliffs with no guardrails to prevent disaster should a driver miscalculate.

Even on a sunny day such as Tuesday, a four-wheel-drive vehicle must creep along at 15 mph.

From Bear Camp Road, one can see the tree-covered valley where Kim disappeared. The forest stretches as far as the eye can see, and there is nothing manmade in sight.

"The family is in good health. We've got to assume he is OK, too," Deputy Jason Denton of the Jackson County sheriff's search and rescue team said as he arrived at the spot where Kim left the roadway. "At least we hope."

Kim's wife, Kati Kim, 30, and his daughters, Penelope, 4, and 7-month-old Sabine, were found safe with the family car Monday afternoon, nine days after they got stuck.

They checked out of Three Rivers Community Hospital in Grants Pass on Tuesday after doctors concluded the baby had suffered no ill effects from the ordeal, and they were staying in an undisclosed location.

"Their focus is on finding James," said Linda Rankin, vice president for patient care at the hospital.

James Kim was wearing a heavy jacket, a sweater, blue jeans and tennis shoes and had two cigarette lighters with him when he set out for help, Anderson said. He said earlier reports that Kim was carrying snowshoes might have been wrong.

"They are pretty resourceful," he said of the Kims. "They survived nine days out there, so maybe he got a fire going."

After they got stuck, the Kims ran the engine of their station wagon to power its heater, and when the gas was gone, they burned the tires. They ate what little food they had, and Kati Kim breastfed her two daughters.

Her mother, Sandy Fleming of Gallup, N.M., said Kati Kim had ventured away from the car with the children to look for her husband after he didn't return Saturday, but she soon abandoned the effort because of the snow and the difficulty of carrying the girls.

"She's just exhausted and worried about her husband,'' Fleming said.

The family left San Francisco on Nov. 18 for a combined vacation and work trip for James Kim, who is a senior editor at Cnet, a tech news Web site based in San Francisco. They spent Thanksgiving in Seattle with family, then went to Portland, where they had brunch with their friend Ryan Lee, 30, on Nov. 25.

The Kims then left on their way

http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2006/12/06/FAMILY.TMP
 
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  • #19
This is a tragic story. Rule #1 when stranded in a blizzard -DO NOT LEAVE YOUR VEHICLE. You will suffer, but not die until you starve to death, which takes about 3 weeks. Huddle for warmth, drink melted snow and STAY WITH YOUR VEHICLE. The locals will almost invariably find you within 10 days if you are on a paved road. I sincerely doubt Kim will be found alive. The bear tracks they reported tonite having found near his footprints is not a good sign. I think he was disoriented when he left the road due to hypothermia. I hope I am wrong.
 
  • #20
Oregon Black bear are not a threat to humans, maybe he could cuddle with the bear and get warm.

When Mr. Kim left the car the storm was over, that day the weather was beautiful, sunny and 45F.

I agree that it is to late for him. His body may not be found for years, if ever.
 
  • #21
It is over.

The body of James Kim has been found.
 
  • #22
Integral said:
It is over.

The body of James Kim has been found.
Very sad news. My thoughts are with his wife, now a widow, and children. :frown: If only . . . .
 
  • #23
Integral said:
http://www.oregonlive.com/newslogs/oregonian/index.ssf?/mtlogs/olive_oregonian_news/archives/2006_12.html#211992" is an explanition of how they got stuck. I am finding it a bit harder to blame Mr. Kim. It looks like Google Maps is the trouble.

Pull up google maps and ask for directions from Grants Pass Or to Gold Beach. You are directed to BLM roads. These are single lane roads that are not passable in the winter to anything other then a 4x4.

Could Google be liable?

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...UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES SHALL GOOGLE OR ITS LICENSORS BE LIABLE TO ANY USER ON ACCOUNT OF THAT USER'S USE OR MISUSE OF OR RELIANCE ON THE GOOGLE SERVICES. ARISING FROM ANY CLAIM RELATING TO THIS AGREEMENT OR THE SUBJECT MATTER HEREOF SUCH LIMITATION OF LIABILITY SHALL APPLY TO PREVENT RECOVERY OF DIRECT, INDIRECT, INCIDENTAL, CONSEQUENTIAL, SPECIAL, EXEMPLARY, AND PUNITIVE DAMAGES WHETHER SUCH CLAIM IS BASED ON WARRANTY, CONTRACT, TORT (INCLUDING NEGLIGENCE), OR OTHERWISE, (EVEN IF GOOGLE OR ITS LICENSORS HAVE BEEN ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES). SUCH LIMITATION OF LIABILITY SHALL APPLY WHETHER THE DAMAGES ARISE FROM USE OR MISUSE OF AND RELIANCE ON THE GOOGLE SERVICES, FROM INABILITY TO USE THE GOOGLE SERVICES, OR FROM THE INTERRUPTION, SUSPENSION, OR TERMINATION OF THE GOOGLE SERVICES (INCLUDING SUCH DAMAGES INCURRED BY THIRD PARTIES). THIS LIMITATION SHALL ALSO APPLY WITH RESPECT TO DAMAGES INCURRED BY REASON OF OTHER SERVICES OR GOODS RECEIVED THROUGH OR ADVERTISED ON THE GOOGLE SERVICES OR RECEIVED THROUGH ANY LINKS PROVIDED IN THE GOOGLE SERVICES, AS WELL AS BY REASON OF ANY INFORMATION OR ADVICE RECEIVED THROUGH OR ADVERTISED ON THE GOOGLE SERVICES OR RECEIVED THROUGH ANY LINKS PROVIDED IN THE GOOGLE SERVICES. THIS LIMITATION SHALL ALSO APPLY, WITHOUT LIMITATION, TO THE COSTS OF PROCUREMENT OF SUBSTITUTE GOODS OR SERVICES, LOST PROFITS, OR LOST DATA. SUCH LIMITATION SHALL FURTHER APPLY WITH RESPECT TO THE PERFORMANCE OR NON-PERFORMANCE OF THE GOOGLE SERVICES OR ANY INFORMATION OR MERCHANDISE THAT APPEARS ON, OR IS LINKED OR RELATED IN ANY WAY TO, THE GOOGLE SERVICES. SUCH LIMITATION SHALL APPLY NOTWITHSTANDING ANY FAILURE OF ESSENTIAL PURPOSE OF ANY LIMITED REMEDY AND TO THE FULLEST EXTENT PERMITTED BY LAW...

...Map information provided through Google is intended for planning purposes only. You may find that construction projects, traffic conditions or other events may cause road conditions to differ from the map results...

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  • #24
It is a tragic event, and there is no point in searching for the guilty. But it does illustrate how important it is to do a good job, no matter what we do. Other people sometimes count on us in ways we have not even imagined. I still think it is a bad idea to leave your vehicle when snow bound, unless you have a very solid notion of where you can find help. If you are on a road, someone will find you within a week to 10 days.
 
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What is the story of James Kim from CNET/TechTV?

James Kim was a senior editor at CNET and a former host on TechTV. He became widely known for his tragic disappearance during a road trip in Oregon in 2006 with his family.

How did James Kim go missing?

James Kim and his family were on a road trip to the Pacific Northwest when they took a wrong turn and became stranded in a remote area of southern Oregon due to heavy snow. They ran out of gas and abandoned their car in search of help. James left his wife and two young daughters to try and find assistance, but unfortunately, he never returned.

Did James Kim survive?

Unfortunately, James Kim's body was found 11 days after he went missing. He had died from hypothermia after becoming disoriented and lost in the wilderness while trying to find help for his family.

Was anyone else injured or missing during this incident?

Thankfully, James Kim's wife and two daughters were found alive and rescued by a search team a few days after he went missing. They were taken to a nearby hospital for treatment of mild hypothermia and frostbite.

What impact did James Kim's disappearance have on the technology industry?

James Kim's disappearance and subsequent passing had a profound impact on the technology industry. He was a well-respected and influential figure in the tech world, and his tragic story sparked discussions and debates about the dangers of relying too heavily on technology and GPS devices while traveling. It also highlighted the importance of being prepared for emergencies and knowing how to survive in the wilderness.

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