Monday, 15 April 2013

Alaska glacier body found: 9-year-old's body recovered from glacier crevasse

Alaska glacier body found: 9-year-old's body recovered from glacier crevasse, The body of 9-year-old Shjon Brown, a Fairbanks boy who fell into the crevasse of a glacier, was recovered, according to an April 15 Yahoo! News release.

Soldiers from the Army's Alaska Northern Warfare Training Center helped recover Brown, who, along with his snowmobile, plunged into a 200-foot ice chasm in the Hoodoo mountains of Anchorage, Alaska.

Shjon and his father were on an outing together, each riding a separate snowmobile. When Shjon drove around a small mound, the ice gave way into a sinkhole like gorge called a moulin, tumbling the boy and machine into the deep.

When Shjon’s father traced the tracks left by his son’s snowmobile, he discovered his boy had fallen into the moulin, a hole formed when melting glacier water opens up a crevasse-like hole below the surface.

Alaska State Trooper spokeswoman Megan Peters said the heartrending incident was unavoidable. "A grown man could have just as easily driven into the hole," she said. "It's just tragic."

Climbers from the North American Outdoor Institute joined a civilian climbing expert and the boy’s father in the search operation. Spotting the boy's goggles, helmet and the partially visible snowmobile, they continued on to the bottom where they found Shjon’s body buried under approximately eight feet of fallen snow at the crevasse floor.

The body was recovered at 12:40 a.m. Monday.

Peters said it was not unusual for a boy of that age to be operating his own snowmobile. In rural communities, children grow up riding snowmobiles and all-terrain vehicles, not simply for recreational purposes, but as a primary means of transportation in the vast Alaskan wilds.

"It's a way of life around here," Peters said.

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