VetEx Climbs Mt Rainier in Memory of Marine and Fallen Climbing Ranger Nick Hall
We went to Mt. Rainier to climb and share company with one another. The agenda was simple – climb and see what developed in conversation around hot topics in our veteran community.
Upon arrival to Mt. Rainier however it became clear that this tight community had been shaken by the death of one of its own. We now had another reason to climb. We climbed to memorialize Nick Hall who had been killed saving the life of another – a selfless act of service that defined his life.
Members of our team had met Nick and we talked with the climbing rangers about their fallen friend. We shared stories of Nick and planned to memorialize these memories on the Summit of the mountain Nick loved so much.
We carried a small flag to be presented to the climbing rangers at Camp Schurman and later to be given to the family. We climbed on this day for Nick Hall.
The words that follow are from Mt. Rainier National Park:
On June 21, 2012, Mount Rainier National Park lost a member of our ranger staff. Nick Hall, 33 years old, a Mount Rainier Climbing Ranger, was assisting in a rescue on Emmons Glacier when he fell approximately 2,500 feet down the mountain.
Originally from Maine, Nick joined the U.S. Marines after graduating high school. He spent six years in the military before spending a season as a commercial fisherman in Alaska. Nick then began attending school at Western State College of Colorado. Upon completion he worked as a Ski Patroller for several seasons with Northstar Ski Area in Lake Tahoe, CA, and at Stevens Pass Ski Area, Skykomish, WA. In his off-season from the ski patrol he served as a River Ranger for the Bureau of Land Management and as a Climbing Ranger on Mount Baker for the U.S. Forest Service.
Nick began his career at Mount Rainier as a Climbing Ranger in 2009. He helped to rescue numerous injured, stranded, and lost climbers with compassion, endurance, superior judgment, courage, and a commitment to service. Nick expressed a strong passion for the National Park Service, the outdoors and his profession as a Climbing Ranger. It is with great sadness that we have lost a friend and colleague in our park. We miss him every day and will continue to honor his memory and his love for Mount Rainier National Park.
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