By Prabhjit Singh and Shabd Singh Khalsa

Jan 03, 2014 – A frantic four-day search for 25-year-old Hari Simran Singh Khalsa in the mountains around Tepoztlán, Mexico ended Friday when rescue teams found his lifeless body. The young man appeared to have fallen from a height while hiking, sustaining an injury to the head that killed him instantly.

Khalsa, along with his wife Emily Ad Purkh Smith, were on vacation at the Villa Maria Immaculada  in Tepoztlán to take part in a spiritual retreat. On the afternoon of December 30th Tuesday took a short hike in the mountains near the center.

Khalsa sent a text message to his wife at 12:30 pm on that day with a photo and a message, “Looking down on you!” The next message Mrs. Smith received was at 2:20 pm, which said, “I accidentally summited another mountain. Looks like I’ll be a little later coming back :). Save me some lunch if you can.” Those were his last communications with his wife.

Two memorial vigils were held Friday. One was at the Raj Yoga Center in Sterling, Virginia. It included chanting and prayers for Khalsa and his family.  Go to this site for more information: A second memorial took place in Espanola, New Mexico and was live-streamed through Go to: this site: In the meantime, family and community members remain in Mexico making arrangements for his remains to be returned to the United States.

Khalsa was a beloved member of the Sikh-American community. He served as an active Kundalini yoga teacher and with his wife ran the Raj Yoga center in Sterling, Virginia. In addition, Khalsa was a community organizer with the Sikh Coalition, and an executive assistant for Sikh Dharma International. He was known for his light, clarity, compassion, kindness, and willingness to serve.

The website  issued the following statement upon learning of his passing.

“It is with heavy hearts that we announce that Hari Simran Singh has been found.  He appears to have fallen while hiking and sustained a fatal injury to the head.  We believe he passed instantly and did not suffer.  His family and friends are making the proper arrangements in Mexico.  There will be a memorial vigil tonight in Virginia.  Please send your love to his family, friends and our entire community and pray with his family tonight.

“Thank you to everyone – the local and national governments of Mexico, the United States Embassy, the Red Cross, all the volunteers, the media, and all of you – for helping us in finding Hari Simran.  This journey has been a testament to the enormous amount of love and goodness he shared with us all during his time on earth.  His last picture said ‘Looking down on you.’ We know he is an angel in the heavens now looking down on all of us. We love you, Hari Simran.”

Hari Simran Singh Khalsa is survived by his wife, Emily AdPurkh Smith, of Sterling, Virginia and his parents, Sat Jagat Singh and Guru Surya Kaur Khalsa of Brooklyn, New York.