Highlands Ranch teen dies on Alamosa peak
A teenager from Highlands Ranch has died in a mountain hiking accident in southern Colorado.
The accident happened Tuesday on Little Bear Peak, in Alamosa County, according to the Alamosa County Sheriff’s Office.
The sheriff’s office identified the victim as 18-year-old Kevin Hayne of Highlands Ranch.
Hayne recently graduated from Lutheran High School in Parker. The school said on its website that he was valedictorian.
Hayne was hiking with a friend, Travis Winder, 17, climbing on a rock face of the mountain when Hayne fell, the sheriff’s office said in a media release.
Winder had to leave the area to get help, the sheriff’s office said.
On Tuesday, a Chinook helicopter from Buckley Air Force Base in Aurora was dispatched to the scene on a rescue attempt, but it crashed before finding Hayne.
No one on the helicopter – six Colorado Air National Guard members and five members of Alamosa County Search and Rescue – was injured.
By the time rescue team members reached Hayne, he had died of injuries received in the fall, according to the sheriff’s office.
The teen’s father, Lynn Hayne, said the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office notified his family of the fatal fall.
An experienced mountain climber, Kevin Hayne had climbed about 40 of Colorado’s 54 peaks that are more than 14,000-feet in elevation, his father said.
“He was trying to climb Little Bear, one of the most dangerous mountains in Colorado,” Lynn Hayne said. “He was aware of that.”
Lynn Hayne said his son was cautious and well equipped with winter gear, picks, crampons, a helmet and other items.
“His goal was to try to climb all of the Fourteeners,” Lynn Hayne said. “He started when he was about 13 years old.”
Hayne graduated from high school last month and was planning to study at BIOLA University, a private Christian school in Southern California.
The young man was thinking about studying in preparation of becoming a minister, but had not yet entirely made up his mind, Lynn Hayne said.
“He had an incredibly strong faith – that is a comfort to us,” Lynn Hayne said.
Kevin is also survived by his mother, Beth, and a sister, Alyssa.
Memorial services are pending.
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