Fundraiser set for injured Snowmass worker
December 10, 2008
ASPEN ” An Aspen Skiing Co. employee who was seriously injured in a snowmobile crash at Snowmass Ski Area last week remains in a coma in a Grand Junction hospital, said a family friend who is hosting a fundraiser Wednesday.
Tim Riley, a 19-year-old member of a Skico snowmaking crew, was driving a snowmobile at the ski area shortly after midnight Friday when he crashed into a tree somewhere on the Hal’s Hollow ski run, according to the Skico.
After spending hours lying unconscious in the snow ” those on his crew apparently were unaware he had reported to work ” Riley was found by another Skico employee, rushed to Aspen Valley Hospital and then airlifted to St. Mary’s Hospital in Grand Junction in critical condition, according to AVH.
A St. Mary’s spokeswoman said on Tuesday that Riley remained in serious condition, which is considered an improvement over critical status.
According to Riley’s friend, Joe McMenimen, Riley was suffering from hypothermia when he was found, is in a coma and has developed pneumonia.
However, “doctors are positive about his condition,” McMenimen said.
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McMenimen said he runs the Taqueria 85 restaurant in Snowmass and has been a friend to Riley since he arrived in Aspen. He added that he has arranged for a gathering at 8 p.m. Wednesday at the Mountain Dragon bar and restaurant on the old Snowmass Village Mall.
“We’re basically just offering up our souls, getting everybody together to think about him, have a positive thought,” McMenimen said.
He said Riley grew up in Grand Junction, and that this was his first season in Aspen. Riley was working on a night snowmaking crew at Snowmass and “living in his car” while he looked for accommodations, McMenimen said.
Efforts to contact Riley’s family were not successful.