A wife and mother from Wylie fell to her death recently while on vacation.
On Monday, 44-year-old Denise McLean and her 12-year-old son went to watch the sunset on the Royal Gorge Bridge, southeast of Colorado Springs, when she slipped and fell.
The bridge is 1,000 feet above the Arkansas River.
McLean loved being outside -- gardening, hiking and walking.
Her family says they’re at peace knowing that McLean died doing what she loved with those she loved.
“Loved the earth, loved the Lord and loved her family and friends,” said Shannon Colson, a friend of McLean’s. “There is not anyone that has not been impacted by her presence.”
Early Tuesday, a search and rescue team found her body 400 feet below.
Hours later, friends and family in Wylie learned the news.
“She was on a rock and she wanted to lean over and see the river and [her son] didn't see her off, thank God for that,” said Lynn Daniel, McLean’s mother-in-law. “He just turned around and she wasn't there. She leaned over too far.”
McLean and her wife, Shanna Hull, were in Colorado for the first time, buying 300 acres to start a new home living off the land.
The two had been together for six years and married in February.
McLean worked as an ultrasound tech at Lake Pointe Imaging Center in Rockwall for the past six years.
Co-workers there say they were devastated to learn of her death, describing her as energetic, adventurous and loving.
“The people that you love never leave you, even when they move on,” said Daniel.
Keeping that in mind, McLean’s friends and family in Texas vow to carry out her plan to build a new life in Colorado.
“We're going to fulfill Denise's dream and our dream,” said Daniel.
As for burial plans, McLean was cremated in Colorado and her ashes will be spread on the land she and her wife bought together.
This weekend, there will be two celebrations of her life -- one for family on Saturday, and one for friends on Sunday in Wylie.