Thursday, September 24, 2020
Sept. 24, 2020

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Searchers find body of skier missing on Mount Rainier


ASHFORD — A Seattle man reported missing last week during a skiing trip in Mount Rainier National Park was found Monday along the base of Liberty Ridge.

KOMO-TV reports Matthew Bunker, 28, was reported missing June 26 by other people in his climbing party. The 28-year-old was skiing behind his partner at about 10,400 feet in elevation near Thumb Rock.

Bunker fell in steep train and wasn’t found until days later.

The National Park Service’s A-Star B3 helicopter and Mount Rainier National Park climbing rangers made several aerial reconnaissance missions during the search to find Bunker.

Authorities found him at the base of a cliff that is inaccessible by ground or aviation teams. The area’s frequent rock and ice fall poses too high of a risk for rescue personnel to access the location, authorities said.

“We extend our deepest condolences to Matthew’s loved ones and friends” said Tracy Swartout, Deputy Superintendent of Mount Rainier National Park. “It brings us a great degree of sorrow to be unable to bring him home to his family.”

His parents, Carolyn and Joe Bunker, live in Delavan, Wisconsin, his hometown. Bunker graduated from West Point in 2013 and spent five years in the military.

Authorities are continuing two unrelated searches for Vincent Djie from the Longmire/Van Trump area and Talal Sabbagh in the Paradise area.