A 38-year-old Centennial man was killed Sunday when he skied into a tree at Keystone Ski Resort in Summit County. The skier was wearing a helmet but died of blunt-force trauma to his chest at about 11 a.m., Summit County Coroner Joanne Richardson said. Bender was on an intermediate blue trail called Prospector on North Peak at Keystone.
This skier, Sean Jared Bender, is the fourth skier killed in Colorado this season, two of which died because of avalanches:
Kyle Shellberg, 32, of Golden died Dec. 5 when he was buried for about 20 minutes after he triggered a backcountry slide at Dry Gulch in Clear Creek County.
Ski-patrol director Scott Kay was killed Nov. 22 at Wolf Creek Ski Area during work to reduce the potential for dangerous avalanches in the in-bounds area.
On Dec. 3, a 22-year-old off-duty Aspen Skiing Co. employee, Kiera Tongish of Aspen, died when she struck a tree at the resort.
Bender is the first person killed at Keystone since March 2008, when Michael Howe, 43, of Andover, Kan., skied into a tree, marking the fourth death at the resort that season when a record 17 skiers and snowboarders were killed on Colorado slopes.