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Franconia Ski Racer Killed By Avalanche In Austria

Photo Courtesy of USSA

  A member of the US Alpine Ski Team from New Hampshire has been killed in an avalanche in Austria.

Ronnie Berlack of Franconia was one of two skiers who perished in the accident. Twenty-year-old Berlack was one of seven skiers named to the US ski team’s development squad last spring. He had finished in the top twenty in two events in last year’s US championships in Squaw Valley.

According to the Associated Press, Berlack and five other skiers were free-skiing off-trail in an area where officials had put out an avalanche alert. The group triggered an avalanche, and Berlack and another skier from Utah, Bryce Astle, were buried. Four others from the group were unhurt.

Berlack graduated Burke Mountain Academy in Vermont, a prep school that focuses on ski racing.

Sam Evans-Brown has been working for New Hampshire Public Radio since 2010, when he began as a freelancer. He shifted gears in 2016 and began producing Outside/In, a podcast and radio show about “the natural world and how we use it.” His work has won him several awards, including two regional Edward R. Murrow awards, one national Murrow, and the Overseas Press Club of America's award for best environmental reporting in any medium. He studied Politics and Spanish at Bates College, and before reporting was variously employed as a Spanish teacher, farmer, bicycle mechanic, ski coach, research assistant, a wilderness trip leader and a technical supporter.
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