Grizzly in Yellowstone National Park. Credit: Neal Herbert, NPS
UPDATED: 6/30/2016 5:00 PST
The search for the bear continues, but there is no way of knowing whether the bear that killed Treat is still in the area of the attack, according to officials familiar with the investigation.
John Fraley of Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks said Thursday that officials will decide "one day at a time" how long the search will continue.
The agency has a six-person wildlife response team focused on the effort, primarily using traps and wilderness cameras (a helicopter flown in the search earlier will see limited use because of the expense). Fraley says we will know next week whether the samples collected at the site of the attack will contain usable DNA. If a bear is trapped, wildlife officials would have to hold it until such time as confirmation has been made, if at all.
Brad Treat’s family told ABC News he was "amazing man, an all around stand up guy, a devoted husband, amazing brother, loving son and loyal friend."
Treat's sister-in-law, Melissa Treat said the 38 year-old USFS Law Enforcement Officer loved hiking, running, mountain biking and being outdoors. "It was hard to find him indoors,” "He loved being outside and enjoying nature." She said to ABC News.
United States Department of Agriculture Secretary Vilsack released the following statement on the death of U.S. Forest Service Law Enforcement Officer Brad Treat:
“I am saddened to hear of the passing of Officer Brad Treat, who was fatally attacked by a grizzly bear yesterday while biking on the Flathead National Forest in Montana with a family member. My thoughts are with Officer Treat’s family and loved ones as they grapple with this tragic news and a devastating loss. We are grateful for Officer Treat’s selfless service and share in mourning a life that was taken too soon. The brave men and women of the U.S. Forest Service risk their lives every day in difficult and challenging circumstances, and today we are reminded of their incredible service to our nation.”
UPDATED: 6/29/2016 9:10 PST
Flathead County Sheriff Chuck Curry says Brad Treat of West Glacier was killed Wednesday afternoon in the Halfmoon Lakes area of the Flathead National Forest. According to Curry, Treat was biking with another person when they surprised the bear, which knocked Treat off his bike. The second rider left to look for help and was not injured. Treat was a law-enforcement officer for the U.S. Forest Service.
Brad Treat, Credit: Treat Family, Facebook.
WEST GLACIER, Mont. - One person is dead following a grizzly attack in Montana’s Flathead National Forest near Glacier National Park.
Investigators say the bear attacked and killed a bicyclist Wednesday afternoon about a mile from the West Glacier KOA campground. The KOA itself is located about three miles from the Park’s West Glacier entrance.
Flathead County Sheriff’s Department says they are currently looking for the bear, but have not located it as of yet.
The identity of the victim has not been released pending notification of next of kin. The Sheriff’s Department told TrailMob they hope to have a press release out soon, but are still investigating circumstances surrounding the death.
Glacier National Park officials say bear attacks in the area are rare. There have been 10 bear-caused fatalities in Glacier since it was created in 1910.
We will update this story as more details become available.
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