Runner Vanishes In Grueling Alaska Race

Call for rule changes after other serious injuries

A runner in the punishing annual Mount Marathon trail race in Seward, Alaska, has been missing since July 4 and is presumed to be the competition's first fatality in a year where several serious course injuries have sparked a call for rule changes. Race officials last saw Michael LeMaitre, a 66-year-old race newcomer, about 200 feet from the summit, lagging well behind the rest of the pack. Alaska State Troopers called off a search for LeMaitre last weekend, but the Seward Volunteer Fire Department has elected to continue with help from the Alaska State Defense Force. The three-mile race, first run in 1915, has participants tackle a 3,022-foot verticle to the top of a peak before descending the same route over slick rock and loose shale. In this year's race, Matthew Kenney, a 44-year-old veteran racer, slipped over a cliff and is currently in an induced coma. Black Hawk helicopter pilot Penny Assman, a 34-year-old rookie racer, fell off the same cliff, breaking ribs and suffering a lacerated liver, despite a volunteer EMT attempting to break her fall. Race officials are considering changes in light of this year's tragedies.

Read more at the Juneau Empire

More Adventure

Love Features? Get the Dispatch

Thank you!

Pinterest Icon