Layton Man Killed In Avalanche While Snowmobiling In Eastern Idaho
LAYTON, Utah – Family and friends are mourning the death of a Layton man who was killed in avalanche while snowmobiling in Eastern Idaho over the weekend.
Tommy Hawkins, age 35, was caught in a slide in Bonneville County, outside of Idaho Falls on Friday.
His sister, Angela Spencer, spoke with KSL but had difficulty pinpointing just one favorite memory of him.
“He loved riding. It didn’t matter what it was,” said Spencer. “He was also very well loved, and he loved everybody.”
Hawkins grew up in Idaho. He served a mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Toronto, Canada before attending college at Idaho State University.
His career brought him to Utah, where he lived in Layton and raised his young family.
“They would do a lot of stuff together as a family and just go play and spend time together,” said Spencer.
One thing Tommy loved most was snowmobiling. That’s what he was doing Friday with a dozen other friends and family members. Toward the end of the day, he and three friends split off from the group.
“The four of them had gone down into a ravine and really the only way out was up,” said Spencer. “Tommy went up and triggered the avalanche.”
Hawkins was buried under five feet of snow. His friends were also buried, but not as deep. By the time they got to him, it was too late. Family members say his avalanche gear deployed, but he was not able to get out from under the slide.
“When I first heard I think I was kind of numb,” said Spencer through tears. “All I felt was disbelief. A lot of disbelief and trying to cope and wondering how his wife would be able to tell her kids.”
Hawkins’ loved ones are now grieving for him, but also for the wife and three children he leaves behind.
“Our lives kind of go back to the way they used to be but theirs’ are kind of completely turned around and upside down,” said Spencer. “It’s hard to imagine that.”
A GoFundMe page has been set up to help Hawkins’ family.
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