Black bear kills 16-year-old boy during race in Alaska

Ausiliatrice Cristiano
Giugno 20, 2017

The teenager was a participant in the 29th annual Robert Spurr Memorial Hill Climb, race director Brad Precosky said. The close-knit Alaska mountain running community is in shock at the fatal mauling, he said.

"There's no safer time to be on a mountain than on a race", Precosky said. As for the ascent, that's a 3,400-foot vertical climb that spans three miles for adult racers and half that for juniors, those who are 17 and younger taking on the mountain.

Racers descend at their leisure. For juniors, the race reaches the halfway point before competitors make their way back down the mountain "at their leisure", as ADN describes.

When a member of the runner's family received the text message, he sought Precosky. "I heard something above me and thought, maybe that's him", Weddleton told the media outlet. "He was very shaken".

A search was launched immediately, Precosky said.

A search was immediately launched and the Global Positioning System coordinates from the teen's cell phone led the search party team in the right direction.

Rangers are now looking for the bear and trying to figure out why it would attack a runner, according to the Alaska Dispatch News.

"It did definitely take a slug strike to the face when the ranger fired on it".

"We know he struck it", he added. Precosky said the bear was found at the site, guarding the body.

Troopers, the National Guard, park rangers and the Anchorage Police Department responded to the call, while other runners volunteered to search for the boy, according to NBC affiliate KTUU. He hadn't heard any reports of bear sightings in the area during the previous week.

"This young man didn't do anything wrong. He was just in the wrong place", Crockett said. He said Sunday's attack was believed to have been a rare predatory move, not a defensive action such as when a female bear will protect her cubs.

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