Murder Suspect Goes Survivor, Flees Into New York State Park

Evading capture, 73-year-old likely living off of the land
Staff Writer

Imagine this: You’re a retired park ranger on the run from the law. You need to lay low to avoid detection—and arrest—but police have launched a full-blown manhunt. Where do you go?

If you said, “Into the woods, obviously,” then you now have something in common with Eugene Palmer, the 73-year-old New York native who allegedly murdered his daughter-in-law and fled into the wilderness of Harriman State Park.

At this time, he’s been on the loose for 13 days, carrying only a shotgun—a feat that has earned not just one but two articles in The New York Times. The most recent story details how—and for how long—experts speculate he can last among the dense woods, small lakes and numerous caves of the 46,000-acre wilderness.

“As the autumn chill descends…how would he stay warm? What would he eat? And how could he do it while avoiding detection?” the article asks. Four expert sources later, the story reveals what any backpacker could have guessed: That with decent basic survival skills, he could be out there for as long as he wants to be.

One potential complication is that Palmer is a diabetic, and if he’s without his medication, he won’t last as long during a food shortage as someone in better health.  

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