Two Illinois spring breakers aged 17 and 18 both die after breaking into Colorado snowboarding area
Two Illinois high school students on Spring Break have died after they broke into a Colorado snowboarding area and sledded down a halfpipe.
Authorities say Dylan Bazzell and Drew Fehr rode tandem down the halfpipe at the Copper Mountain Ski Resort at about 8.35pm on Sunday.
The friends launched off a large snowbank at the bottom and fell hard on the ice below, causing blunt force trauma.
Deputies from the Summit County Sheriff’s Office immediately responded to the scene and tried to resuscitate the all-star athletes, aged 17 and 18, but they were pronounced dead at the scene.
The halfpipe was roped off at the time, as the boys had apparently been sledding down the pipes after the resort closed off its ski area at sunset, which was at about 7.12pm on Sunday.
The Summit County Coroner’s Office is now investigating the boys’ deaths.
Drew Fehr and Dylan Bazzell died on Sunday after breaking into a Colorado snowboarding area and sledding down a halfpipe
The boys launched off a large snowbank at the bottom of the halfpipe and fell hard on the ice below, causing blunt force trauma
Copper Mountain’s president and general manager Dustin Lyman said: ‘The entire team at Copper Mountain is deeply saddened by this tragic incident.
‘Our most sincere condolences go out to the affected families and friends.
‘We are also thankful to our local emergency responders for their quick response and the medical assistance provided.’
The ski resort warns its guests about the dangers of skiing and sledding, with a post on its website reading: ‘Caution: Snow play can be hazardous.’
‘Risks include, but are not limited to, collisions with natural or man-made objects or other individuals and variable natural and man-made walking and sliding surfaces including, but not limited to, snow, packed snow and ice, and injuries or death may result.’
The resort also said in a statement to CBS Colorado that safety is their top priority, and that ‘we’d ask our guests to please observe posted signs and warnings, and not enter closed trails and areas.’
Both Fehr and Bazzell played basketball for Prairie High School in Illinois, and were named all-state athletes
The resorts closes its ski area at sunset, which was at about 7.12pm on Sunday
Dylan is the son of Darin and Lynette Bazzell, and Drew is the son of Brian and Susan Fehr.
Lynette and Susan are teachers in the Prairie Central School District in Illinois, while Darin served as the basketball coach for the high school.
Friends and family remembered the two teens as all-star athletes with great attitudes.
Bazzell played football and basketball for the school this past year.
He was named to The Associated Press’ first-team all-state basketball squad earlier this month, after helping lead the team to a 31 – 3 record, an Illini Prairie Conference championship, a regional title and a No. 1 ranking in Class 2A.
Bazzell also competed in football for the Prairie High School Hawks, serving as the kicker, receiver and defensive back for the team, which finished 11 – 1 after falling in the Class 3A quarter final, the Pontiac Daily Leader reports.
The school went unbeaten in the regular season and won an Illini Prairie Conference championship.
Fehr also competed in football and basketball for the high school, serving as the football team captain, lead rusher, scorer and tackler. He, too, earned an all-state mention.
Both Fehr and Bazzell earned awards for their sporting ability in high school
Authorities immediately arrived on the scene but could not resuscitate the boys
Friends and family remembered the boys as all-star athletes at their Illinois high school
Posting on Facebook, one community member Jeremy Stoller said: ‘We could all only hope to impact our community the way that Dylan and Drew did.
‘Through their sports career and especially this senior year they brought back the glory days of Prairie Central Football and Basketball,’ he wrote.
‘I can’t remember how many times when I was younger I would pretend to be Gary Tidwell or Darin Bazzell while shooting hoops on my driveway. Now our kids are shooting hoops pretending to be Dylan and Drew.
‘It wasn’t only sports, they were all around good kids and great role models,’ Stoller added. ‘The support the surrounding communities have shown is nothing short of amazing. Jim Mattson said it best, right now we are all Prairie Central Hawks.’
In a statement, school superintendent Paula Crane told the community that the district is ‘committed to doing everything we can to help our students and staff with the grieving and healing process.’
She noted that the district teamed up with the First Baptist Church of Fairbury to offer counseling, prayer services and a place for students to mourn.
‘This loss will affect everyone in our school and in our communities,’ Crane said. ‘Students may have a difficult time dealing with the loss, and we encourage you to talk with your child.’
Funeral arrangements are yet to be determined.
Source of data and images: dailymail