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Well-Known Mountain Climber Dies

Well-Known Mountain Climber Dies

Posted - Dec. 18, 2004 at 5:44 p.m.



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Alex Cabrerro reportingMountain climbing is a dangerous sport, but one an Ogden man loved. This weekend he died doing it. Crews recovered his body this afternoon.

It was an emotional moment for them because the man was considered an expert in the sport and search and rescue crews knew him personally.

Search and rescue crews say Ken Gigy died almost right away. He slid and fell about 600 feet on top of a mountain in Ogden.

"Either something slid out or else he just slipped on the snow and he took a slide. Once you take a slide, there'd be no stopping you."

He is a well known climber in this area, which makes this accident even tougher to understand.

Sometimes, even the best make a mistake.

Paul Booth/ Ken's Friend: "Ken was the best all-around climber in this area."

But when rock-climbing is your best, there is no room for error.

Lt. Jeff Malan/ Weber County Search & Rescue: "In this particular area he's in at this time of year, it's really dangerous. He shouldn't have been up there alone."

Yeah, but if there was a rock to climb, or a mountain to hike, Ken Gigy was going to do it.

Paul Booth: "He did every type of climbing possible... rock, ice, snow, mountaineering."

Unfortunately, something went wrong on this Ogden mountain Friday night. When he didn't come home, his family and friends, along with Weber County Search and Rescue, went looking for him. They found him, already dead.

John Sohl: "I cried. Not holding back, I cried."

John Sohl took it hard. Even though it's his job to conduct rescues and recoveries, this one was different. He knew Gigy well.

Now, his family has to plan a funeral, his friends have to say goodbye. But they agree, at least Gigy died doing what he loved.

Paul Booth: "I climbed with Ken once or twice a week for the past 12 years. He'll be missed greatly."

I spoke with Gigy's wife and she wanted to say thank you to her husband's fellow climbers who found him, as well as the hard work put in by Weber County Search and Rescue.

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