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Anchorage man dies while crossing Little Susitna River

Laurel Andrews

An Anchorage man died Thursday while attempting to cross the Little Susitna River in Southcentral Alaska, Alaska State Troopers reported.

Yong Soo Kim, 74, and a friend were out gathering berries and mushrooms Thursday at the Hatcher Pass Management Area, a popular Southcentral recreational site. During the day trip, the two men got lost and came upon the Little Su, trooper spokesperson Megan Peters said, near Edgerton Parks Road and North Palmer-Fishhook Road. “The river runs between the two and it is a swift section of the river,” she said in a press release.

The two men spotted a house nearby on the other side of the river.

The friend told Kim to stay put while he crossed the river to get help, Peters reported. Kim tried to cross the river himself but fell in and was swept downstream.

Troopers received a report of a missing person at 10:32 p.m. Matanuska-Susitna Borough Emergency Management Services and Mat-Su Water Rescue arrived minutes later and found Kim about 164 feet downriver, according to troopers. Emergency responders attempted to resuscitate him, but Kim was unresponsive.

He was transported to the Mat-Su Regional Medical Center and was pronounced dead at 12:35 a.m. Friday. Kim's friend was uninjured.