LOCAL NEWS

Friend remembers drowning victim as respected member of Utah’s ‘LARPing’ community

Mar 27, 2018, 9:50 PM | Updated: 11:54 pm

KEARNS — A man who police said died while practicing holding his breath in a rec center pool was being remembered Tuesday as a well-known and respected member of Utah’s ‘LARPing’ community.

Gabriel Crowther, 39, had been learning to snorkel and apparently had a goal of being able to hold his breath under water for as long as 4 or 5 minutes at a time, long-time friend Lance Butler said.

“Apparently he got into trouble and it was too late by the time they could pull him out,” Butler said.

Unified Police on Saturday said lifeguards had been keeping an eye on Crowther and attempted to rescue him, but first responders were unable to revive him once he was out of the Kearns Oquirrh Park Fitness Center pool.

RELATED: Man drowns while practicing holding his breath, police say

“I don’t know if I’ll ever get used to it—to him not being here,” said Butler, who had grown close to Crowther through the live action role-playing community.

“We have fighting tournaments, we have arts and science, crafting tournaments—which include making stuff as well as singing and dancing and performance—and he did all of it,” Butler said. “He excelled at fighting to the point where he became our region’s top fighter. He was the first person who was ‘knighted’ in our region as a ‘knight of the sword’ for combat, which is extremely impressive.”

Crowther came to be well-known in the community as ‘Aagard.’

“I became his mentor, he became my mentor and we became as close as brothers,” Butler said.

Butler said Crowther was supposed to come to his house later Saturday morning to use the industrial laser he had stored in Butler’s shop, a space Butler uses to make 3D-printed LARP weapons and movie props.

“Instead of him walking through the door, I got a text that he had passed,” Butler said.

Butler said he was going to miss his Crowther’s friendship, determination to be the best at whatever he did, and his singing.

“I’m glad that it’s there,” a soft-eyed Butler smiled as he gazed at one of Crowther’s YouTube videos. “I wish I had some of my favorites from him.”

Crowther leaves behind a wife and four children.

“I don’t know how I’m going to go to an event and not having him at the campfire leading it and singing and just being as exhuberant and as excellent as he always was,” Butler said.

Relatives set up a GoFundMe account to help Crowther’s wife with funeral and living expenses.

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Local News

Zachary Crane and Gabriella Arnold, two students who had their tests destroyed....
Debbie Worthen

High school students retake AP tests after school mix up destroyed them

Two dozen Green Canyon High School students in North Logan won’t get credit for AP tests they took last May as the tests were mistakenly destroyed in transit.
1 day ago
Photo illustration (Photo by Matt Cardy/Getty Images)...
Matt Gephardt

Get Gephardt: Your credit card can up your interest rate without telling you

If your credit card company raises your interest rate even just a little bit, it could have a significant impact on how long it takes you to get out of debt. A relatively new law means your credit card company can do just that and they do not even have to give you the heads up.
1 day ago
Police closing the road of Mountain View Corridor and 9000 South after an accident. (UDOT)...
Michael Houck

Three vehicle crash closes Mountain View Corridor, one passenger ejected

Police closed a portion of Mountain View Corridor after a three-vehicle crash Tuesday night.
1 day ago
Kevin Linford (Facebook)...
Michael Houck & Andrew Adams

Additional charges filed for Utah business owner accused of sexually assaulting two women

The Utah business owner arrested for assaulting two women at a party is facing additional sexual assault charges.
1 day ago
The sewer line rapid assessment tool or SL-RAT in use in a Salt Lake City street,...
Shelby Lofton

Singing sewer technology saves water for Utah

Singing technology is being used underground across Utah, saving the state a lot of water.
1 day ago
A holy bible and crucifix rest atop the United States Constitution and American flag, which is embl...
Canice Madsen & Boyd Matheson

‘A More Perfect Union’: Upholding the Constitution

Many people from across the political spectrum believe the Constitution is in crisis. In the upcoming KSL Special ‘A More Perfect Union', Boyd Matheson takes a closer look at how we as individuals can uphold the guiding principles of the Constitution.
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

young woman with stickers on laptop computer...
Les Olson

7 ways print marketing materials can boost your business

Custom print marketing materials are a great way to leave an impression on clients or customers. Read for a few ideas to spread the word about your product or company.
young woman throwing clothes to organize a walk in closet...
Lighting Design

How to organize your walk-in closet | 7 easy tips to streamline your storage today

Read our tips to learn how to organize your walk-in closet for more storage space. These seven easy tips can help you get the most out of your space.
Types of Computer Malware and Examples...
PC Laptops

5 Nasty Types of Computer Malware and Examples | Everything You Need to Know to Keep Your Computer and Family Safe

Here are the different types of computer malware and examples that could potentially infect your computer.
tips how to quit smoking...

7 Tips How to Quit Smoking | Quitting Smoking Might be One of the Hardest Things You Ever Do but Here’s Where You Can Start

Quitting smoking cigarettes can be incredibly difficult. Here are 7 tips how to quit smoking to help you on your quitting journey.
Photo: Storyblocks...
Blue Stakes of Utah 811

Blue Stakes of Utah 811: 5 Reasons To Call 811 Before You Dig When Working in Your Yard

Call before you dig. Even at home, you could end up with serious injuries or broken utilities just because you didn't call Blue Stakes of Utah 811.
Days of...
Days of '47 Rodeo

TRIVIA: How well do you know your rodeo? Take this quiz before you go to the Days of ’47!

The Utah Days of ’47 Rodeo presented by Zions Bank is a one-of-a-kind Gold Medal Rodeo being held July 20-23, 25 at 7:30 PM. The Days of ’47 Rodeo How well do you know your rodeo trivia? Take the quiz to test your know-all before heading out to the Days of ’47 Rodeo at the […]
Friend remembers drowning victim as respected member of Utah’s ‘LARPing’ community