Investigators: Deputy Seattle fire chief fell to his death on hunting trip

Seattle Fire Chief Jay Schreckengost
Seattle Fire Chief Jay Schreckengost
Credit: Kittitas County Sheriff's Office

CLIFFDELL, Wash.– A coroner says blunt force trauma from two falls is what killed a Seattle deputy fire chief who had gone missing on a hunting trip.

The Kittitas County Coroner reported Jay Schreckengost’s body had several injuries including a broken wrist and spine.

Investigators from the Kittitas County Sheriff’s Office said they think Schreckengost may have slipped and fallen down more than one cliff or steep hill. The sheriff’s office said it was snowy where he was elk hunting and that could have made the ground slippery. Deputies said the slope he might have fallen from was about 700 feet in elevation.

His body was found Sunday, more than a week after he had gone missing. It was found about half of a mile away from where his pickup was parked.

He was reported missing on November 2 when he left his lodge and never returned.

The Seattle Fire Department said in part on a Facebook post that, “While the outcome is not what we would have hoped, we know that this will bring closure to Jay’s family, friends and colleagues. We will always remember you Jay, you are forever in our hearts.”

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