Ripples of sadness continue to spread from the death Tuesday, March 1, of Vermont native Ryan Hawks, after a crash Sunday at the North American Freeskiing Championships at Kirkwood, Calif.
Hawks, 25, was a world-class free skier.
Hawks crashed while doing a backflip off a large cliff on Kirkwood's Cirque, ESPN reported. He was treated on the spot by ski patrol, and flown by helicopter to Reno's Renown Health Center, where he was admitted to the Intensive Care Unit. He died Tuesday morning.
Hawks skied with Sugarbush Resort's Diamond Dogs Freestyle Team for four years during his high school years. Kevin Wry, Diamond Dogs Team founder, remembers Ryan fondly. "We called him 'Ryan Red', because there were several Ryans in the program, and he was the one who always wore the red jacket. Ryan was the guy who showed up early to take runs before the program started, and skied until the lifts closed. He had an incredible enthusiasm for the sport. He'll be sorely missed."
Hawks was born into an avid skiing family in South Burlington, and grew up skiing Mad River Glen.
His father, Peter Hawks, is an outback guide for Sugarbush.
A release from Sugarbush Resort extended the community's deepest sympathies to the Hawks family.
Two weeks before his death, Hawks and his friends visited Mad River Glen, where Hawks learned to ski. Brent Harrewyn filmed them free skiing the Glen, and made this tribute video. Ryan Hawks is wearing a green jacket and black pants. Check it out.