A 29-year-old Lewiston woman died Saturday after she stumbled and fell down a waterfall in Franklin County, Maine, just south of Rangeley.

The Maine Warden Service reports Tanisha Barry was with some friends at Smalls Falls on the Sandy River in Township E late Saturday afternoon.  Barry and a friend were in the water in a pool above the falls around 4:30 p.m.  Witnesses said she got close to the edge, stumbled, and before she could regain her footing, fell approximately 30 feet down the falls.

One of Barry’s friends climbed down to the bottom of the falls to try and rescue her but could not locate her in the turbulent water, according to spokesperson Mark Latti. He then drove to an area with cell phone reception to call 911 before returning to the falls.

The Maine Warden Service, Rangeley Fire Rescue Department, Phillips Fire Department, Strong Fire Department and the Franklin County Sheriff's Office Search and Rescue team all responded to the scene.

Emergency crews had to rappel down the rocks to the base of the falls, Latti said. They located Barry's body caught in the recirculating water.  Three team members wearing cold water suits used ropes to go under the falls, but the woman had already succumbed to her injuries.

The crew was able to retrieve the body and convey it up the slippery cliff walls utilizing ropes and a litter.

Barry was transported to Wiles Funeral Home in Farmington by NorthStar Ambulance. An examination is planned by the State Medical Examiner’s office on Sunday.

Any further information will be released as it becomes available, Latti said.

Barry was the mother of four children between the ages of 3 and 12. Her family has set up a GoFundMe page for anyone who is able to donate towards funeral expenses and to help her children.

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