Two people were killed and one was injured in two separate predatory attacks by black bears in Alaska.
On Sunday, a teenage boy participating in a popular mountain race frantically called his brother, telling him he was being chased by a bear. The boy, Patrick Cooper, had veered off the trail during the race and had become lost, south of Anchorage.
Authorities tragically found the boy’s body about a mile off the path. The bear was still there, standing guard. A Chugach State Park ranger shot the bear in the face, but the animal was able to run away.
A day later, Alaska State Troopers were called out to investigate a fatal mauling at a mine 300 miles northeast of Anchorage. Officials say a worker hired to take geological samples was killed and another injured in the attack.
These attacks are interesting because of how rare attacks by black bears are in the state of Alaska. A biologist compiling a report on Alaska bear attacks since 1880 said that only six deaths had been linked to black bears in 130 years. The most recent attack was in 2013, when a 64-year-old Fairbanks man died after a bear attack.