Woodland Hills mom found alive after going missing in Zion National Park

The Virgin River winds through the red rock canyon walls near the Temple of Sinawava inside Zion National Park in Utah.
The Virgin River winds through the red rock canyon walls near the Temple of Sinawava inside Zion National Park in Utah.
(Marc Martin/Los Angeles Times)

A Woodland Hills hiker who was reported missing for two weeks inside Zion National Park in Utah was found and reunited with her family Sunday.

A vigorous search for 38-year-old Holly Suzanne Courtier had been underway after she failed to show up for a scheduled shuttle departure from the park Oct. 6. Courtier, who had been dropped off for a hike earlier that day, was reported missing Oct. 8, according to the National Park Service.

“We are overjoyed that she was found safely today. We would like to thank the rangers and search teams who relentlessly looked for her day and night and never gave up hope,” her family said in a statement provided by the park service.

The statement said a “credible tip” from a park visitor, who said they had seen Courtier within the park, led to her rescue. But officials did not provide information about Courtier’s condition or the location where she was found. A park service spokeswoman did not immediately respond to a request for comment Sunday.

Courtier’s daughter, Kailey Chambers, chronicled the search for her mother in the 148,000-acre park and sought tips through the website


Last week, Chambers posted on Instagram: “The rangers have informed me that unless they gather additional intel they will only be continuing their search for 1-2 more days. It’s getting down to the final few days of survival without food.”

Chambers has said her mother is an experienced hiker who was familiar with Zion National Park and had done solo hikes in the past. She told KCBS-TV Channel 2 last week that Courtier had been visiting national parks across the country in a converted van after losing her job as a nanny during the pandemic.

Officials from numerous agencies, including the park service, Washington County Sheriff’s Office and Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, as well as volunteers, aided in the search for Courtier.

“We are also so grateful to the countless volunteers who were generous with their time, resources and support. This wouldn’t have been possible without the network of people who came together,” Courtier’s family’s statement said.