La Salle alum Robert G. Fryling died in an interesting, yet more common than I expected, way: ski accident. The successful lawyer and graduate of the class of 1966 hit a tree while downhill skiing March 23 in Utah, according to The Philadelphia Inquirer.
Now Fryling joins the lengthier-than-expected lists of individuals cut short by the slopes — including Sony Bono and RFK’s son, Michael Kennedy. To put it in perspective, there are only about four deaths caused by shark attacks each year, but many still fear the water.
However, ski deaths, on the other hand are plentiful; yet people continue to ski.
“According to the National Ski Areas Association (NSAA): During the past 10 years, about 37.1 people have died skiing/snowboarding per year on average. During the 2006/07 season, 22 fatalities occurred out of the 55.1 million skier/snowboarder days reported for the season. Eighteen of the fatalities were skiers (15 male, 3 female) and 2 of the fatalities were snowboarders, both male. In two of the cases the equipment used was reported as unknown. The rate of fatality converts to .40 per million skier/snowboarder visits.”
Although Fryling has passed, we can learn from his deaths and be a little wary when touching the sky at Blue Mountain next winter.
—Sam Fran Scavuzzo