NEWS

B.C. mountaineering accidents claim 2 in past week

08/22/2013 04:14 EDT | Updated 10/21/2013 05:12 EDT
The B.C. Coroners Service says two highly experienced mountain climbers, aged 60 and 71, suffered fatal mishaps on separate mountaineering trips in B.C. this week.

On Wednesday, Aug. 14, a 60-year-old man fell "a significant distance" while rappelling at Redoubt Peak, which is on the B.C.-Alberta border at the south end of Mount Robson Provincial Park.

The coroners service identified the man as Richard Lewis Gebert, of Carmel, Maine.

Gebert had been spending several weeks mountain climbing in the area of Jasper National Park and along the B.C.-Alberta border, and was reported missing the day after his fall, when he failed to check in with family members. Parks Canada safety specialists recovered his body later that day.

On Monday, 71-year-old Ferdinand Taxbock, was with two other climbers in the Bugaboo Mountains, south of Golden when he fell.

His companions reported that he appeared to lose his footing on loose rock. He fell roughly 50 metres and died at the scene.

"Both Mr. Gebert and Mr. Taxbock were highly experienced mountaineers," coroner Barb McLintock said. "The B.C. Coroners Service is continuing to investigate these deaths."

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