Two bodies found in Joshua Tree are possibly missing CSUF students

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Hikers discovered two bodies in Joshua Tree National Park Sunday morning, according to a statement by the National Park Service. The bodies were discovered in the same area that two former Cal State Fullerton students, Rachel Nguyen and Joseph Orbeso, went missing in late July, but authorities have yet to determine whether the cases are connected.

CSUF Chief Communications Officer Jeffrey Cook said in an email that the university has been following the developments on the two individuals since July, and that the students had been enrolled at CSUF in the past, but were not registered for the fall 2017 semester.

“We have seen those recent news reports,” Cook said. “Hopefully loved ones will soon be able to find closure.”

Nguyen and Orbeso entered the park July 27, according to an Aug. 25 statement by the National Park Service. By the time of that press release, the National Park Service and San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department had entered “limited continuous search mode” due to few leads or traces of the individuals.

The San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department tweeted Sunday at 1:43 p.m. that a positive ID on the discovered bodies is pending autopsy.

“Updates will be provided when available,” the tweet read.

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