The family of Corey Borg-Massanari, 22, who was involved in an inbounds avalanche at Taos Ski Valley on Thursday, announced Monday afternoon that he had died at University of New Mexico Hospital in Albuquerque, N.M.Borg-Massanari is the second fatality reported from the inbounds incident.
Borg-Massanari was born in Pueblo, raised in Minnesota and recently moved to Vail, where he attended Colorado Mountain College and worked at Patagonia in Vail Village and would often go skiing on his lunch break, his family said. During the summer months, he was a zipline tour guide for Zip Adventures at 4 Eagle Ranch.
The family has set up a GoFundMe page to help with financial burdens.
“Our grandson Corey Borg loved the mountains, no matter what season. The mountain took his life unexpected with an avalanche while skiing in New Mexico,” wrote his grandmother Deb Bowers Borg on Facebook on Sunday. “I am so proud of this young man and the impact that he has left on so many lives. You will be missed here on earth but we will all see you later in our journey. Please keep his family in your prayers.”
According to a press release from the resort, an “inbounds avalanche” occurred near Kachina Peak just before noon on Thursday, burying the two skiers near the 12,400-foot peak. The Taos News reports that medical teams had worked to keep Borg-Massanari alive for roughly three days after members of Taos Ski Patrol and volunteers pulled him and another man from the snow. Medics transported the second victim, 26-year-old Matthew Zonghetti, to Holy Cross Hospital in Taos, where he died before 5 p.m. on Thursday, hospital CEO Bill Patten told the Taos News.
It is unclear what triggered the avalanche.
“Thank you for helping our family,” the GoFundMe page reads. “My nephew (my sister’s son) Corey Borg was in an avalanche while skiing in New Mexico. We are trying to take financial stress away for the family and allow them to just focus on Corey. We greatly appreciate anything and please continue to pray for everyone.”
In addition to the GoFundMe page, Borg-Massanari signed up to be an organ donor and his family wishes to encourage others to register in honor of Corey at http://www.BeTheGiftToday.com.
“Corey was known for his smile, his quirky sense of humor and his unique sense of style,” his family wrote. “He loved spending time with family and friends, especially his fuzzy dog, Abu. Corey was an experienced and avid skier and loved the outdoors. Corey’s family would like to thank the Taos Ski Valley staff, skiers and volunteers who assisted in the search for their son, and the care given by EMS and helicopter staff.”
Assistant editor Ross Leonhart can be reached at 970-748-2984 and email@example.com. Follow him on Instagram at colorado_livin_on_the_hill.