Suspected suicide victim at Gorge Bridge identified as Taos business owner

'She loved living and working in the mountains'

By John Miller
jmiller@taosnews.com
Posted 4/15/20

Morgan Sanders, a massage therapist and owner of a local landscaping business in Taos, died of a suspected suicide at the Río Grande Gorge Bridge on Thursday (April 9), her family has confirmed. She was 37.

According to an obituary her family sent to the Taos News on Wednesday (April 15), Sanders was born in Amarillo, Texas, on Nov. 8, 1982.

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Suspected suicide victim at Gorge Bridge identified as Taos business owner

'She loved living and working in the mountains'

Posted

Morgan Sanders, a massage therapist and owner of a local landscaping business in Taos, died of a suspected suicide at the Río Grande Gorge Bridge on Thursday (April 9), her family has confirmed. She was 37.

According to an obituary her family sent to the Taos News on Wednesday (April 15), Sanders was born in Amarillo, Texas, on Nov. 8, 1982.

Growing up, she was active in First Presbyterian Church and developed a passion for the outdoors as a camper and counselor at Camp Longhorn, located on Inks Lake in the Texas Hill Country. Her family also visited Lake Tanglewood to go skiing and inner tubing.

After she graduated from Tascosa High School in 2001 and the University of Texas at Austin in 2005, Sanders spent years traveling throughout the West and Southwest. She made trips to Aspen and Boulder, Colorado, and Santa Fe and returned to Austin and Amarillo before settling in Taos. According to her Facebook page, she attended Southwest Acupuncture College in 2014 and the Santa Fe School of Massage in 2016.

Sanders later moved to Taos and became the owner of Stone Fruit Garden, a local landscaping company focused on sustainable cultivation, in September 2018.

"She loved living and working in the mountains," her family wrote in her obituary, which states she "loved to snow ski, hike, camp, run, paint, dig in the dirt and grow flowers and vegetables. She loved all animals, especially dogs. As an avid runner, she completed a half-marathon, two full marathons and an ultramarathon."

Photos Sanders posted to Facebook over the years rarely show a shot taken indoors. Sanders captured snowcapped peaks and lakeside scenes, blood-red sunsets reflected in a sideview mirror and hands covered in soil.

The gorge west of Taos, where she died, also appears frequently in the catalog she left behind.

Sanders is survived by her father, mother, two sisters, their husbands and three nieces.

A team from the Taos County Sheriff's Office recovered Sanders' body about 1/2 mile downriver from the bridge on Monday (April 13) and were still awaiting results of an investigation by the New Mexico Office of the Medical Examiner.

Sanders' vehicle had been found parked out at the bridge and local kayakers had sighted her body while rafting downriver.

In lieu of flowers, the family is requesting that a donation be made in Sanders' name to either Animal Rescue Shelter in Amarillo or at Stray Hearts Animal Shelter in Taos.

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