N.M. firefighter with Deep East Texas ties found dead

Token Adams (Source: Facebook)
Token Adams (Source: Facebook)

NEW MEXICo (AP) - A firefighter who once worked in Texas' Sabine National Forest has been found dead a week after he went missing.

Authorities on Friday afternoon said that 41-year-old Token Adams was killed in an apparent crash of his ATV on a mesa.

"We offer our condolences and prayers out to the Adams family," said Manny Guttierez, a spokesman for the New Mexico State Police. "Today at approximately 11:45 am a male subject was located deceased and positively identified as Token Adams. He was located on top of a mesa and he was located by Jemez crews out of Jemez Pueblo

Ernie Murray, a spokesman for the National Forest Service, said Adams worked in the Sabine National Forest from April 2008 to February 2010. Adams still has friends in the Deep East Texas area.

Adams' last Facebook status update said, "Well, day 8 on the Millville fire in Utah, feels good to finally take a shower, back at it tomorrow … Tis the season."

The 41-year-old engine crew captain disappeared Aug. 30 while checking on a report of smoke. Adams failed to return to a pre-arranged meeting point with two other firefighters.

Hundreds of volunteers, firefighters, search and rescue teams and the Civil Air Patrol have spent the past week combing some 50 square miles of mesa tops and steep canyons east of Jemez Springs for Adams.

Despite the rugged terrain, searchers had remained hopeful of finding him alive because Adams, who grew up on the edge of the Sierra National Forest in California, was an experienced outdoorsman with extensive survival skills.

Adams, a Navy veteran and a former member of the Kings River Hotshots in California, has worked in the Jemez Ranger District in northern New Mexico for more than a year. Officials said he knows the area well

Adams is survived by his pregnant wife, Heidi, and a 4-year-old son.

A benefit account has been set up for Adams' family at the Angelina County Federal Employees Credit Union at the intersection of Pershing Avenue and Southwood Drive.

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