Bryce Newcomb, a professional skier based in Jackson Hole, passed away on Friday night, June 15, due to injuries he sustained from a fall back on March 27. A beloved member of the ski community, he was 30 years old.
The accident happened when a cornice broke beneath Newcomb as he was trying to get a look at a steep, rocky line on the shoulder of Cody Peak, just south of the Jackson Hole Mountain Resort boundary.
He had skied the line recently, was wearing a helmet, and was not on skis when it happened. Newcomb’s family suspects that during the fall he received blunt trauma to the head, though he did not show any cuts or bruises on his face. Diagnosis included sustained widespread diffuse axonal injuries of the brain.
This rare and serious condition is often described as lesions or sheering around the brain. Though Newcomb initially showed signs of responding to pain, he never regained consciousness. After several weeks at the Eastern Idaho Medical Center in Idaho Falls, he was moved to a long-term health care facility in Boise.
But two weeks ago, his condition took an alarming turn. On Monday, June 11, Newcomb’s brother, Cole, wrote an update on his Facebook page stating that Bryce was “beyond medical care.”
“Bryce fought hard to stay with us, but ultimately he decided that it was time for him to move on from this world and see what else is out there,” Newcomb’s family wrote on his GoFundMe page. “Bryce’s family would like to thank each and every person that has reached out, donated or shown their love and support in any and every way over the last three months.”
The news of his death brought forth an outpouring of grief from the ski community, with numerous friends posting photos and messages of love and condolences on social media.
Those who knew him remember Newcomb as not just a skier, a regular in the tram line who skied everything the mountain offered, but as someone who enjoyed ripping the sleeves off his friends’ shirts to give them impromptu tank tops, and shredding big blocks of cheese–both in the air and at the bar–as a way of poking fun at the “shredder” attitude. Through it all, he was genuine in his love of skiing and the outdoors, and his approach was always in laughter and humility.
POWDER extends our deepest condolences to Newcomb’s family and friends.