Our thoughts go out to friends and family of Anthony “Tony” Siebert, 24, who was killed in an avalanche outside of Vail, Colorado, January 6, 2013. Be careful out there everyone!
Tony Seibert, grandson of Vail founder, killed in avalanche on East Vail Chutes; 3 others survive
VAIL, Colo. – Anthony “Tony” Seibert, whose grandfather founded Vail Mountain, has been identified by the coroner as the man killed in an avalanche on the East Vail Chutes Tuesday.
The 24-year-old Seibert is the grandson of Pete Seibert Sr., “who is widely credited along with Earl Eaton as the man who discovered the terrain that would become Vail Mountain,” Eagle County Coroner Kara Bettis said in a statement.
Tony Seibert was a talented extreme skier who made and performed in ski videos.
Three other people survived with non-life threatening injuries and were released after a rescue operation late Tuesday afternoon, Eagle County sheriff’s spokeswoman Jessie Mosher said.
The avalanche was reported about 11:30 a.m. to the Vail Public Safety Communications Center, Mosher said.
The East Vail Chutes are in the backcountry outside of Vail Mountain’s ski area boundary. The Vail Resort development plan describes the East Vail Chutes as, “an extremely steep, avalanche prone bowl that drains down to Interstate 70 or to East Vail.”
The Colorado Avalanche Information Center tweeted that the large avalanche was triggered near the treeline.
“This is a shocking and terrible tragedy,” Chris Jarnot, chief operating officer of Vail Mountain, said in a statement. “Our hearts, thoughts and prayers go out to Tony’s entire family. I want to acknowledge how integral the Seibert family is to the fabric of our community; their contributions to Vail date back to Vail founder Pete Seibert, Tony's grandfather. This is an incomprehensible loss and we will support the Seibert family and our community through this difficult time. Tony had recently starred in, “Climb to Glory,” a documentary that will forever be a tribute not only to the famed 10th Mountain Division and his family’s legacy but to a wonderful albeit tragically too short life.”
The grandfather was a veteran of the famed 10th Mountain Division, an elite unit of World War II soldiers who trained for skiing, mountain climbing and winter warfare in Eagle County. Pete Seibert was badly wounded during combat in northern Italy, but returned home to help create Vail’s European-style ski resort in the early 1960s. He died in 2002.
Friends posted condolences on the Facebook page of Tony Seibert’s sister, Lizzie Seibert.
“Lizzie! My prayers are with you and your family. He will always hold a special place in this valley, and in your heart. go out there and ski for him. Stay strong!” a friend wrote.
“I can’t even put into words how terrible this is I love u guys and I am so sorry. Tony will never be forgotten,” another friend posted.
Several agencies worked on the rescue, including: Eagle County Sheriff's Office, Vail Mountain Rescue Group, Vail Ski Patrol, Eagle County Paramedic Services, Flight for Life, Breckenridge Ski Patrol K9 Avalanche Team, High-Altitude Army National Guard Aviation, and Vail Police Department.
The avalanche was near the area where an avalanche last month caught Edwin LaMair, burying him up to his neck. LaMair’s brother and a friend were able to rescue him.