Breckenridge confirms 2 fatal incidents at ski area in past month |

Breckenridge confirms 2 fatal incidents at ski area in past month

Sawyer D'Argonne, Summit Daily News

Representatives with Breckenridge Ski Resort have confirmed two incidents that resulted in fatalities at the ski area over the past three weeks.

On Jan. 20, a “serious incident” took place on the mountain involving a 45-year-old woman from Leesburg, Virginia, according to the resort. The woman has since been identified as Shirley V. Louangamath, originally from Vientiene, Laos.

Breckenridge Ski Patrol responded to the incident on an intermediate trail on Peak 8, and the woman was transported to St. Anthony Hospital in Lakewood but later died. The manner of death was accidental and caused by traumatic heart failure due to blunt force trauma, according to the Summit County Coroner’s Office.

The resort also confirmed another fatality on the mountain Feb. 7 involving a 56-year-old man from Austin, Texas, identified as Stephen William Piche. According to the resort, ski patrol recovered Piche from an expert trail on Peak 9, and he was transported to the Breckenridge Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead. The manner of Piche’s death was natural, and it was caused by an acute myocardial infarction, or heart attack, according to the Coroner’s Office.

“Breckenridge Ski Resort, ski patrol and the entire Vail Resorts family extend our deepest sympathy and support to our guests’ family and friends,” John Buhler, vice president and chief operating officer at Breckenridge Ski Resort, said in a statement.

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