Denali Park geologist dies

The death of Denali National Park geologist Phil Brease today has residents in the Denali community in shock.

Brease, age 60, has been Denali Park’s geologist since 1986. He was hiking today with a group of Tri Valley High school students just south of Healy.  Teacher Mark Jordan went ahead on the trail with students and when Brease didn’t show up, Jordan went back to check on him.  He found him unconscious on the trail and not breathing.  Jordan called 911 and immediately began CPR.  The ambulance arrived within 10 minutes, but continued attempts to revive Brease were unsuccessful.

Kris Fister, Park spokeswoman, says that Brease was an institution. He has inspired countless park employees, visitors, students and others.  She said the park community is reeling with shock at Brease’s death.

State troopers are investigating the death as part of their normal routine in such cases. Indications are that Brease likely died of natural causes.

photo courtesy of NPS

For Talkeetna residents that knew Phil, KTNA will publish information on memorial services when they are known.

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