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Story of cave diver whose body is still stuck upside down in rock after desperate rescue attempt was made into a film

Claire Reid

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Story of cave diver whose body is still stuck upside down in rock after desperate rescue attempt was made into a film

The tragic death of a cave diver who became trapped between rocks while out exploring in Utah was turned into a movie.

John Edward Jones, 26, entered the Nutty Putty cave alongside family and friends during an expedition in November 2009. You can see a trailer for The Last Descent here:

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Once inside, the group split into two, with Jones heading off with his brother Josh to an area dubbed the ‘birth canal’, however, as part of the cave were still unmapped, Jones attempted to travel through the wrong entrance and became stuck.

The tight spot left him unable to turn around and barely able to breathe - he called out to his brother for help but as Josh attempted to pull him out by his legs, Jones slipped further down and became completely wedged inside the enclosed space.

Over the next 28-hours, more than 100 people got involved with rescue efforts to try and free Jones.

The Last Descent tells the real life story of John Jones. Credit: Deep Blue Films Inc
The Last Descent tells the real life story of John Jones. Credit: Deep Blue Films Inc

Speaking at the time, Sergeant Eldon Packer of the Utah County Sheriff's Office said: "Where he is trapped, he is on a bend, so there's no way to really get a hold on him to be able to pull directly straight back."

Despite enlisting the help of power tools and a pulley system, the rescue attempts failed and Jones died in the cave - where his body remains more than 10 years later.

The story of Jones tragic death - and the attempts to rescue him - were turned into a movie called The Last Descent in 2016.

The movie was directed by Isaac Halasima and starred Chadwick Hopson Jones as John, alongside Jacob Omer as Josh.

John and his wife Emily, who was pregnant at the time of his death. Credit: Jones Family Handout
John and his wife Emily, who was pregnant at the time of his death. Credit: Jones Family Handout

Speaking to KSL in 2016, Halasima said: "[I wanted to] take this amazing person that I know I definitely could relate to and see if we can put a twist on it that makes it inspiring.”

Jones' family were supportive of the movie, saying in a statement at the time: "John will always be remembered for his genuine love of his family and friends, passion for adventure, goofy sense of humour and unwavering faith. The heroic acts of the men and woman who worked tirelessly to free him will never be forgotten. We hope those who view the movie are inspired to live and love selflessly, and are comforted knowing that hope can be found in the wake of tragedy."

The movie only received a limited release in cinemas - but was met with mostly positive reviews.

Featured Image Credit: The Jones family Handout/ Deep Blue Films

Topics: TV and Film

Claire Reid
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