Sheriff’s Office releases name of killed rock climber

Photo from Matthew Del Grosso's Facebook page.  The 23-year-old USU student died rock climbing Thursday afternoon, May 21 in Green Canyon. 

LOGAN — The Cache County Sheriff’s Office has released the name of the 23-year-old rock climber who died Thursday afternoon in Green Canyon. He is Matthew Del Grosso, a Utah State University student from Maryland.

Chief Deputy Matt Bilodeau said Del Grosso was climbing with friends when he fell around 3:00 p.m. near Scout Cave, a mile east from the mouth of the canyon. He reportedly fell 50-to-100 ft. and then tumbled an additional 100 ft. down the mountain side

Bilodeau said when paramedics, along with Search and Rescue crews, located Del Grosso he was unresponsive after suffering a severe head injury.

“We started CPR like I stated,” said Bilodeau. “When CPR didn’t work, Logan Regional Hospital called and pronounced him dead. At that point the lightning started really hitting all around them and it was decided, for the safety of the emergency responders that everybody needed to come off the hill because they are literally lightning rods, when they are sitting on that shale.”

The storm dissipated and by 5:30 p.m. a high angle team was able to recover Del Grosso’s body and turned it over to state Medical Examiners. They will now determine the cause of death.

Bilodeau said Thursday’s accident is a tragic reminder to be safe when being in the outdoors.

“I think the Highway Patrol coins the phrase that we are in our hundred deadliest days,” said Bilodeau. “That’s not just on the highway. That’s in the back country as well and people need to be cognizant of their own abilities. They need to use all the safety equipment that they should be using.”

Bilodeau said people should also be mindful of weather conditions that can change quickly during this time of year.

Del Grosso’s Facebook page said he was earning a Ph.D. at USU after previously studying molecular biology and psychology at Salisbury University, in Maryland.

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