UPDATE: 3:15 p.m.
Two prominent American businessman and brothers have been identified as the victims of the avalanche accident on Mt. McCrae on Jan. 23.
Brothers Timothy Kinsley, president of Kinsley Properties, and Jonathan Kinsley, an executive of Kinsley Enterprises, were confirmed as the victims of the incident by a spokesperson with Kinsley Enterprises.
“We are deeply heartbroken to share news of the sudden and tragic passing of Jonathan Kinsley, an executive of Kinsley Enterprises, and his brother, Timothy Kinsley, president of Kinsley Properties, while on a skiing trip in British Columbia,” said the Kinsley family in a statement on the Kinsley Construction website.
The two brothers were leaders in the construction and real estate industry in Central Pennsylvania.
“We know their presence as dedicated leaders in our organization and the community will be immensely missed by many and we are grateful for your love, understanding and prayers as our entire Kinsley family manages this loss,” added the statement.
Two guests with Canadian Mountain Holidays (CMH) Heli Skiing were killed in an avalanche in the mountains near Revelstoke on Jan. 23.
Rob Rohn, President & COO of CMH Heli-Skiing, released a statement on the company’s website to advise of the incident.
According to the statement, an avalanche occurred just before 2 p.m. on Monday (Jan. 23) near Mount McCrae in an area known as ‘Chocolate Bunnies’ near Revelstoke where three people were caught in the slide with two fully buried guests and one partially buried guide.
The three buried individuals were located by their transceivers and extracted from the snow. CMH guides were able to attend to the two people who had been fully buried.
The two were flown to Kelowna airport and then transported to Kelowna General Hospital, however, both died.
Immediate action was taken on scene by all involved to locate the victims, provide first aid and transport by helicopter to hospital. Ultimately, the efforts to save the lives of the two skiers were unsuccessful said Revelstoke RCMP Detachment Commander Sergeant Chris Dodds in a press release.
According to the statement, the CMH guide is in stable condition at Kelowna General Hospital after being transported there by ground from Revelstoke.
“It is impossible to put into words the sorrow that we feel and the sadness that is shared by our guests, their families and all of our staff,” said the statement. “At this time, our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of the deceased.”
The incident is now being investigated by the BC Coroner’s office and the RCMP.
This incident adds to the list of fatal avalanches in the Interior since the beginning of 2023.
Earlier in the weekend, reports of the tragic death of a snowmobiler near Valemount on Saturday, Jan. 21. The rider was from Grande Prairie, AB and was in “Bowl 3 in the Oasis snowmobile area south of Valemount,” according to Avalanche Canada’s Avalanche Fatality Database. The rider was accompanied by a second, who was able to get away from the slide. When they located the buried victim, they were unresponsive. Avalanche Canada said the layer snow ran on a “layer of facets near the base of the snowpack,” which is the same snowpack that has been a problem since the Siberian Vortex from back in November.
An avalanche near Kaslo already claimed the lives of two earlier in January. On Jan. 9, two skiers accessed the Jardine SE3 region in the central Kootenays using snowmobiles. When the avalanche was triggered, one of the skiers was buried in 1.5–2 meters of snow, according to Avalanche Canada. The second skier was evacuated to hospital, but died 12 days later from his injuries.