• Forecast
  • News Tip
  • Categories
Temperature Precipitation
Estimated read time
4m 4s

Intel executive among climbers presumed dead on Mount Rainier

By Associated Press 4:37 PM June 2, 2014
SEATTLE (AP) –

One of the six climbers presumed dead after a fall on Mount Rainier was a vice president of Intel Corp. in Southeast Asia.

Intel spokesman Bill Calder confirmed Monday that his colleague Uday Marty was among the group of climbers who likely plummeted to their deaths last week high on snow-capped mountain in Washington state.

Calder says that the Marty was “widely loved and respected at this company.”

Authorities say the bodies of the two guides and four climbers may never be recovered because of the hazardous terrain on the 14,410-foot glaciated peak.

 

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP’s earlier story is below.

It may be weeks or months – if ever – before rescuers can get on the ground to search for six climbers who likely plummeted to their deaths high on snow-capped Mount Rainier in Washington state.

Park rangers and rescuers often are able to retrieve bodies within days of an accident, but sometimes it takes weeks or months, when conditions have improved and snow has melted on parts of the mountain.

Occasionally victims are never found, as in the case of 11 people swept to their deaths in an ice fall in 1981 in Mount Rainier’s deadliest accident. The same is true of a non-alpine accident in which a cargo transport plane crashed into the mountain in 1946 – the bodies of 32 Marines remain entombed.

“The mountain is so inaccessible and can be inhospitable. We can’t always retrieve everybody who is lost there, unfortunately,” said Patti Wold, a spokeswoman with Mount Rainier National Park.

The bodies of the two guides and four climbers who fell to their deaths last week on the 14,410-foot glaciated peak may never be recovered because of the hazardous terrain, authorities say.

“The degree of risk in that area, due to the rock fall and ice fall that’s continuously coming down from that cliff onto the area where the fall ended, we cannot put anybody on the ground,” Wold said.

It’s unclear whether the climbers were moving or camping at the time of the accident, Wold said this past weekend. Searchers located camping and climbing gear and detected signals from avalanche beacons buried in the snow at the top of the Carbon Glacier at 9,500 feet in elevation.

It’s also not known what caused the climbers to fall from their last known whereabouts at 12,800 feet on Liberty Ridge, whether it was rock fall or an avalanche. They were last heard from at 6 p.m. Wednesday when the guides checked in with their Seattle-based company, Alpine Ascents International, by satellite phone. The group failed to return Friday as planned.

Alpine Ascents identified the two guides on its website. Matthew Hegeman, the lead guide, was described as intense, philosophical and always in the pursuit of excellence with a good sense of humor. Eitan Green, the other guide, loved his time in the mountains and was a strong leader and quick to smile, the website said.

The Seattle Times reported Monday that Seattle mountain climber John Mullally was one of the six who died. His wife, Holly Mullally, issued a statement Monday saying that she had previously been on climbs organized by the company, and had also climbed with Hegeman.

“I respected his leadership and found him to be experienced, skilled, appropriately conservative, thoughtful, and someone who I could count on to keep my husband safe, barring tragedy beyond our control,” Holly Mullally wrote of Hegeman.

Officials at Maine’s Colby College said Green was a 2009 graduate of the college. Colby spokesman Steve Collins said the Massachusetts native majored in anthropology and was a member of the college mountaineering club. A memorial service is scheduled for June 5 in Levine Chapel in Brookline, Massachusetts.

Rob Mahaney told The Associated Press that his 26-year-old nephew, Mark Mahaney, of St. Paul, Minnesota, was among those presumed dead. He said the climber’s father and brother flew to Seattle on Saturday after learning what happened. Mahaney said his nephew had climbed Rainier before.

The area will be checked periodically by air in the coming weeks and months, Wold said. They will also evaluate the potential for a helicopter-based recovery as snow melts and conditions change.

In 2012, park rangers recovered the bodies of three climbers about eight months after they disappeared during unrelenting storms on Mount Rainier.

In 2001, the body of a 27-year-old doctor was discovered more than two years after he vanished while snowboarding on the mountain. Also that year, the remains of three men were removed from the mountain after being entombed there for nearly 30 years after their small plane crashed. A hiker and former climbing ranger found the wreckage of the single-engine aircraft that crashed in January 1972.

___

La Corte reported from Olympia, Washington. Associated Press writer Dinesh Ramde in Milwaukee contributed to this report.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Latest Stories

  • Lifestyle

    Moose gives birth in Lowe’s parking lot

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on May 31, 21:29

    A moose gave birth in the parking lot of the East Anchorage Lowe’s Tuesday, drawing a crowd to watch as her baby took its first steps. Katherine Warren said she alerted security to the newborn and its mother when she spotted them while shopping with her family. She said Lowe’s staff and security at Tikahtnu […]

  • Politics

    Alaska Legislature passes 11th hour state budget

    by Liz Raines on May 31, 20:41

    Tuesday evening, just hours before pink slips were scheduled to go out to thousands of state workers, Alaska lawmakers passed a budget. The House and Senate broke a long impasse by postponing action on controversial oil tax credit legislation and funding only the minimum required by law for that program. How to pay for the […]

  • Sports

    Alaska Raceway Park opens state’s newest oval track

    by Dave Leval on May 31, 20:22

    A new racetrack has opened up in the Mat-Su Valley, filling the void left when Wasilla’s North Star Race Track closed in 2012. “There was a lot of people with a lot of money and time invested in their racing operations, and they didn’t have anywhere to go,” explained Michelle Maynor, whose parents own the new […]

  • News

    Municipality of Anchorage looks to hire those with service backgrounds

    by Alexis Fernandez on May 31, 19:47

    The Municipality of Anchorage is looking to hire new employees with a service background. Tuesday, Mayor Ethan Berkowitz announced that the municipality has signed on to become an Employer of National Service. That means it will be giving hiring preference to applicants with a community service background, like AmeriCorps and Peace Corps alumni. It’s part of a […]

  • News

    From boards to buds: Pot dispensary plans to take over snowboard shop

    by Shannon Ballard on May 31, 19:10

    An Anchorage skate and snowboard shop may soon be transformed into one of the state’s first retail marijuana shops. AK Boardroom is located downtown on Fourth Avenue. Co-owner Will Ingram said the lack of snow the past two seasons is forcing them to close. “Without that drive to go ride the epic powder, it’s just kind […]

  • News

    Despite early spring, flightseeing companies still waiting to take off

    by Bonney Bowman on May 31, 18:53

    Many outdoor industries got a jump on business thanks to spring’s early arrival, but there’s one still waiting to get off the ground. Flightseeing companies get the majority of their business from tourists. Lake Hood has been open to float planes and their business for weeks, the sounds of the aircraft taking off and landing echoing […]

  • Lifestyle

    New push to stop feeding the birds at Cuddy Family Midtown Park

    by Lauren Maxwell on May 31, 18:40

    A polluted pond is sparking a new educational campaign and the message is pretty simple: Don’t feed the birds. Jeanne Swartz, an environmental program specialist with the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), said addressing the problem at Cuddy Family Midtown Park in midtown is an agency priority when it comes to water quality issues […]

  • News

    APD: Teen runaway missing for two weeks

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on May 31, 16:44

    A teenage girl ran away from the North Star Behavioral Hospital earlier this month, and after checking multiple leads, Anchorage police are asking for the public’s help in finding her. Lillian Otte, 15, left the facility on May 15, according to a statement from APD spokeswoman Jennifer Castro. Otte is considered a runaway, Castro said, […]