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Avalanche kills grandson of Vail ski resort founder

Eagle County Sheriff via AP

One person was killed and three injured in an avalanche on Tuesday in the East Vail Chutes in the back-country outside of Vail Mountain's ski boundary.

A large avalanche in a back-country area of Vail Mountain , Colo., killed the grandson of a man credited with discovering the terrain that became home to the famous ski resort.

Anthony “Tony” Seibert, 24, of Boulder and Vail was killed in the skiing accident on Tuesday morning, Eagle County Coroner Kara Bettis said.

Avalanche dangers are high in the western U.S. after storms stack news layers of heavy snow on top of weak ones.

Bettis said an autopsy would determine the cause and manner of Seibert’s death.

Seibert’s grandfather, Peter Seibert Sr. and Earl Easton are widely viewed as the founders of the Vail resort.

"This is a shocking and terrible tragedy,” said Chris Jarnot, the chief operating officer of Vail Mountain. ”Our hearts, thoughts and prayers go out to Tony's entire family.”

Jarnot noted that Tony Siebert had recently starred in, "Climb to Glory," a documentary film about the U.S. Army’s  10th Mountain Division Ski Troopers. 

Three other people were also injured in the avalanche.

All of those involved in the accident were out to experience a popular back-country area called the East Vail Chutes in Eagle County. The area is outside the boundaries of the nearby Vail ski area.

No other people were believed to be in the slide area.

The three people hurt did not have life-threatening injuries, according to Jessie Mosher, an Eagle County Sheriff's Office spokeswoman. They were "extracted" off of the mountain on Tuesday afternoon, she said.

The three survivors were then able to leave the scene on their own. They did not require admission to the local hospital, Vail Valley Medical Center spokeswoman Lindsay Hogan said.

The Colorado Avalanche Information Center described the avalanche as "large" and said it happened at or near the timberline, the Denver Post reported. The area was at "considerable risk" for an avalanche on Tuesday, according to the paper.

Peter Seibert Sr. and Easton made a seven-hour climb to the top of what is now called Vail Mountain where they became inspired to build the resort, according to the Colorado Business Hall of Fame.

On Dec. 22, two brothers skiing in the East Vail Chutes area triggered an 800-foot wide avalanche that buried Edwin LaMair up to his neck in snow.

His brother, David, raced down the hill and dug him out. A helmet camera captured David LaMair’s ski down the slope.