Translate Our Site

Open Space APD Officers Rescue Two Hikers

Friday’s Heroes: Officer Matthew Schmidt and Sergeant Michael Meisinger

Albuquerque- Today Mayor Richard J. Berry honored two Open Space APD Officers for their bravery and determination when they rescued a pair of stranded hikers. Sergeant Michael Meisinger and Officer Matthew Schmidt of the Albuquerque Police Department’s Open Space Division are this week’s Friday’s Heroes.

This past June, a pair of hikers set off on a hike along the crest of the Sandia Mountains. One of the hikers felt like a challenge, so they decided to deviate from the La Luz Trail. Six hours into their hike, the hikers found themselves lost, afraid, and most importantly, out of water. One of the hikers was able to get enough cell phone service to notify 911 of their distress. A helicopter was sent to find the hikers, but their location was too difficult to access, so ground crews were dispatched. AFD and APD Open Space Divisions were searching, but unable to locate the hikers. Approximately two hours later, APD Officers Meisinger and Schmidt were able to locate the hikers. The officers rehydrated the lost hikers and guided them back to safety.

In a letter sent to the Mayor’s Office one hiker said, “These gentlemen saved my life. They put me before themselves and became my heroes. I can never begin to express the sincere gratitude and adoration I have for Mike and Matt, their police chief, the entire department and the Albuquerque Police Department.”

Thanks to their determination to find the lost hikers, Sergeant Meisinger and Officer Schmidt were able to successfully rescue two Albuquerque citizens. What seemed like an innocent hike turned into a life-threatening day for two Albuquerque folks, but with the dedication of these two officers, both hikers were able to return home that night.