Hit-and-run skier at Keystone leaves woman with seven broken ribs
It was late in the morning on Jan. 18 when David Convy heard a sound and took notice.
The distinct hissing of skis gave the first report of a skier screaming down Whipsaw, a blue cruiser at Keystone Resort. Convy watched helplessly as the skier hit a roller, launched into the air, and — before Convy could even utter an oath — plowed into the back of his wife, who had been skiing ahead of them.
Convy, 58, quickly skied over to his spouse of nearly 34 years, who wasn’t getting up. “I can’t breathe, I can’t breathe,” she told him.
“She tried to sit up, but she was suffering this excruciating pain,” he said.
The offending skier first focused on gathering up his gear. After he grabbed his last piece of equipment, the skier asked, “Is she OK?” Convy said he didn’t know. Without offering assistance, the skier claimed the collision had been her fault, that she had cut him off.
“That really set me off,” Convy said. “I did start lecturing him and screaming at him a little bit. Another guy skied up and asked if we needed ski patrol.”
In the meantime, the man who hit Convy’s wife skied away toward Spring Dipper and disappeared.
Convy said he was too focused on his wife to think about pursing the skier. Ski patrol arrived on the scene and sledded Lori Convy, 56, down to St. Anthony Keystone Medical Clinic. An X-ray revealed that she had seven broken ribs and a punctured lung.
“When they told me 7 my jaw hit the floor — there are only 12!” David Convy said.
She was then transported to St. Anthony Summit Medical Center in Frisco, where she remained for the next four days. Because of the nature of her injuries, physicians worried that she would develop pneumonia if they didn’t manage her pain in a way that allowed her to breathe. After she was well enough to travel, the Convys headed back home to Overland Park, Kansas. Lori Convy mainly slept on the way.
The couple tipped the Summit Daily off to their story when they submitted a letter to the editor thanking ski patrol and the medical staff at Keystone and Frisco. However, the couple did not file a criminal complaint on the incident.
Just as with an auto crash, it is illegal to leave the scene of a serious collision in a ski area. According to a Summit County Sheriff’s Office official, it is standard operating procedure for ski patrol to alert law enforcement when such an incident occurs. However, Taneil Ilano, spokeswoman with the sheriff’s office, said on Friday, twelve days after the collision, that no such communication had occurred.
“We were unaware of the incident involving the skier accident on January 18th and it is currently under investigation,” she wrote in an email.
A spokeswoman for Vail Resorts, which owns and operates Keystone, said they were gathering more information on the incident and didn’t have an immediate comment.
The Conveys have been driving up to Colorado ski country at least once a year since the mid-1980s. Keystone is their mountain.
“We love it,” David Convy said. “In fact, we always talk about spending more time out here after my wife retires.”
David Convy said he and his wife are strong skiers, but cautious, sticking mainly to greens and blues. They wear helmets and usually take it easy. He had been hit maybe 3 times in the 38 years he’s been a skier, but never with serious injuries.
David Convy describes the man who hit his wife as being in his late twenties, tall and slender. He said the man’s face was obscured because he was wearing a helmet and goggles and had a bushy reddish beard that had completely iced over.
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