Helicopter crew retrieves climber's body near Pyramid

By Troy Hooper
Real AspenSeptember 14, 2011
A mountain recovery team fished a man's body from the Thunder Pyramid Peak area Wednesday morning.

David Morano, 41, an accountant from Dillon, fell between 200 and 300 feet Saturday from a ridge near 13,832-foot Thunder Pyramid Peak, about a mile south of 14,018-foot Pyramid Peak.
David Morano



Pitkin County sheriff's deputies said Morano was climbing at least two of the peaks in the area. After he fell over the eastern side of the edge, Morano's climbing partner and neighbor reportedly attempted to save him before calling authorities.

A two-person team from Mountain Rescue Aspen flew into the rugged region Wednesday morning. A sheriff's deputy said that the helicopter positioned the crew about 50 feet above Morano's body, where they were able to lift him out using a 150-foot cable.

The recovery team transported Morano's body to T-Lazy Seven Ranch, which was used as a landing zone for the mission.

An investigation into the death remains ongoing. An autopsy is scheduled for Thursday.

"Thus far, there is nothing to suggest that this was anything more than an accident," Pitkin County sheriff's deputy Alex Burchetta told Real Aspen.

Morano leaves behind a wife and 8-year-old child.

Follow Troy Hooper on Twitter.


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