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After fatal mauling, victories turn hollow for Bird Ridge race winners

  • Author: Doyle Woody
  • Updated: June 19, 2017
  • Published June 18, 2017

Victory contained no meaning for Najeeby Quinn and Scott Patterson on Sunday after a 16-year boy died from a bear mauling at the 29th annual Robert Spurr Memorial Hill Climb up Bird Ridge.

"It's just really sad,'' said Quinn, who won the women's division. "Love your loved ones while you can because you don't know when they can be taken away from you.

"This has nothing to do with the Bird Ridge race or the race director. People are always on this mountain. The kid didn't do anything wrong. It's nobody's fault. It's just sad. The family's in my (thoughts), for sure.''

Men’s winner Scott Patterson, one of the searchers Quinn called “selfless people,’’ said emergency officials and racers launched a search early Sunday afternoon after receiving word the young racer had encountered a bear. Patterson said he helped carry equipment onto the mountain for emergency medical personnel.

"I feel really bad for the family,'' Patterson said. "The kid's out there racing, having a good time, and this happens.''

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