CHEYENNE (WNE) — A 61-year-old University of Wyoming professor has died after being caught in a backcountry avalanche while skiing in western Wyoming near the Idaho border.
Jay Norton, a UW Extension soil fertility specialist, was skiing March 17 in the Game Creek drainage on the western slope of the Teton Mountains near Victor, Idaho, when the avalanche happened, according to the university.
“We have lost a talented and beloved member of our community,” said UW President Ed Seidel. “Our hearts go out to his friends and family as we all grieve his loss.”
Norton’s spouse, Urszula Norton, is an associate professor in UW’s Department of Plant Sciences.
Norton was skiing with companions in Game Creek Canyon in Wyoming just east of Victor when Teton County Search and Rescue responded to the avalanche call, the Teton Valley News reported. The party had been staying at the Plummer Yurt, and Norton and an unidentified older woman were buried in the slide on the northeast aspect of Game Creek.
They were located and uncovered by their companions, according to Teton County Search and Rescue.
The woman was conscious, but Norton was unconscious. The companions performed CPR on Norton, but he died as search and rescue responded.
He was the second person killed in an avalanche-related incident in Teton County this season, said Teton County Sheriff Matt Carr.