Gainesville Daily Register

October 27, 2012

Moss Lake man dies after fall from cliff

By GREG RUSSELL, Register Staff Writer
Gainesville Daily Register

Moss Lake — Thomas Bonner’s fall from a steep cliff near Moss Lake is the presumed cause of his death, though officials still await details on when he fell, and how.

Cooke County Justice of the Peace Dorthy Lewis said friend Ronnie Voth found the body of Bonner, 41, a Moss Lake resident, close to 4 p.m. Wednesday.

The discovery followed a day-long search by family and friends that began Wednesday, though investigators currently don’t know when Bonner went missing.

“His four-wheeler was found at the top of an 80-foot climb,” Lewis said Friday. “How he got there is still under investigation.”

But Lewis said Voth only found Bonner after using his own all-terrain vehicle to reach a rugged trail common to off-road riders.

“He remembered him mentioning that he was going on his four-wheeler and then he went specifically looking for him,” Lewis said about Voth, adding that nothing about the details of Bonner’s death scene indicated anything other than a fall. “He was a very strong, healthy man who worked out. We just don’t know why he ended up at the bottom of that drop there. It’s a very steep and rocky trail that you can only access with a four-wheeler.”

Lewis added that further details are officially pending with the Dallas County Medical Examiners office.

A funeral Mass for Bonner is set for 10 a.m. Monday at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Muenster with Fr. Ken Robinson and Fr. Ray McDaniel officiating.

Burial will follow in Sacred Heart Cemetery under the direction of McCoy Funeral Home of Muenster. A rosary and vigil service is set for 6:30 p.m. today at Sacred Heart Catholic Church.