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Avalanche sign (Photo: boggy22/Thinkstock)

Slide Kills Vail Founder’s Grandson

Second avalanche in three weeks

News Outside Online

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Tony Siebert, 24, the grandson of Vail Founder Peter Siebert, died in an avalanche today while skiing the East Vail Chutes. The area is a popular and well-known out-of-bounds backcountry destination, accessible via a short hike from Vail’s Mongolia Bowl T-bar. Siebert was with three others when the avalanche occurred. The others all survived with minor injuries.

Vail received roughly 19 inches of fresh snow in the last week. The Colorado Avalanche Information Center has listed avalanche conditions above treeline as “considerable.”

On December 22, in the same area, skier Davis LaMair captured footage of a dramatic avalanche on his GoPro. He then skied off a series of cliffs to rescue his brother, Edwin, who had been caught and buried in the slide. The East Vail area, with its convenient access from the resort, is the frequent site of skier-triggered avalanches.

Statement from Chris Jarnot, SVP and COO of Vail Mountain:

This is a shocking and terrible tragedy. Our hearts, thoughts and prayers go out to Tony’s entire family. I want to acknowledge how integral the Seibert family is to the fabric of our community; their contributions to Vail date back to Vail founder Pete Seibert, Tony’s grandfather. This is an incomprehensible loss and we will support the Seibert family and our community through this difficult time. Tony had recently starred in, “Climb to Glory,” a documentary that will forever be a tribute not only to the famed 10th Mountain Division and his family’s legacy but to a wonderful albeit tragically too short life.

Video: GoPro footage of the Dec. 22, 2013 East Vail Avalanche.

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Lead Photo: boggy22/Thinkstock