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Hall agreed with Taylor and added that the park was especially crowded that day, Oct. 11, due to national park closures during the government shutdown. The men were worried that a child would be crushed by the boulder, he said, and during his time in the park he only saw one ranger, who was stationed at the entrance.
"With the information we had we made the best decision we could," he said. "We weren’t there for vandalism or anything like that."
Hall also said that Taylor recently underwent shoulder surgery and has little upper body strength. The fact that Taylor could still push the formation over demonstrates how loose it was, Hall said.
"The intent was to enjoy the natural resources with a bunch of friends," he added. "We’re extremely sorry for our actions. There was no in way shape or form any intent to go out there and cause any harm to our natural resources."
The Facebook video received a barrage of praise from the men’s friends.
"Too funny," wrote one person.
"You have so much fun!! Thanks for saving a life [smiley face]. Rock On," wrote a second.
The rock pusher, Taylor, wrote that they were "just doing our civic duty!"
When a person warned that the men should remove the video before they go to jail, Hall fired back.
"Nobody’s going to jail," he wrote. You have a 2,000 lb boulder that is teetering on a 2"[sic] dirt ledge and about ready to fall off on it’s [sic] own. 5 minutes before this video we watched a family with many small children walk right below the rock to take a family photo. We didn’t do anything until they were gone because we didn’t want anyone to get hurt. One gust of wind and that rock was falling whether someone was there or not. ...
"I’ll take my chances with the cops rather then my conscience after hearing a family was crushed to death by a rock I was prompted to move."
Swalberg said just because a rock looks loose, it doesn’t mean people should knock it over.
Yes, it and other rock formations in southern Utah will fall one day, likely generations from now, but "that doesn’t mean we go and push over Delicate Arch because we’re afraid it’s going to topple," he said.
Swalberg said the priceless goblin formation won’t be able to be restored.
According to Taylor, he has not been contacted by any authorities about the incident.
He added that since news broke of the video, reactions have been negative and he was "accosted" by a television camera crew Thursday. Still, he said the issue goes back to his decision to push over the rock, not with the video that ended up online.
"The issue is we did it," he said. "I wish we wouldn’t have."
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