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Deputy Chief Jay Schreckengost (Seattle Fire Department)

SEATTLE, Wash. - Kittitas County Sheriff's announced today the autopsy of Deputy Fire Chief Jay Schreckengost concluded on Friday and determined to the cause of death to be accidental.

Forensic examination showed numerous blunt force injuries including a broken wrist, a fractured vertebra, and a severed spinal chord. Coroner Nick Henderson said Schreckengost likely died instantly after falling about 600 feet.

On the morning of Nov. 2 when Schreckengost went scouting for elk, snow was on the ground, creating slick conditions. Investigators believe he fell partway down a 700 foot slope and could not climb back up. A second fall landed him near the bottom and caused a fatal spinal fracture.

An extensive search was carried out by around 60 agencies and organizations, including Mountain Rescue Teams from the surrounding area. The Olympic and Central Mountain Rescue Teams found his body on Nov. 14, about half a mile from his truck.

The Seattle Fire Department delivered his body home via department vehicles.

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