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Skier who died in collision at Eldora remembered as 'icon' of snow sports

Ron LeMaster, 72, of Boulder, died after a collision with a snowboarder.

BOULDER COUNTY, Colo. — A skier who died in a collision with a snowboarder Tuesday at Eldora Ski Area has been identified as Ron LeMaster, 72, of Boulder.

LeMaster was the author of books and articles about skiing and was a coach, ski school trainer and photographer, according to the Professional Ski Instructors of America and American Association of Snowboard Instructors (PSIA-AASI).

Nicholas Herrin, the CEO of PSIA-AASI, told 9NEWS he worked with LeMaster many times over the years, including when Herrin was a ski director at Crested Butte Mountain Resort.

"And he was someone that people always look to and turn to to help provide information and educate instructors across the country. His knowledge and depth of alpine skiing is one that will be remembered for a very long time," he said. 

Additionally, he believes many skiers would remember LeMaster from seeing him on the side of the hill with his camera, because he was a talented photographer. 

"What he did through his imagery, he allowed people to understand what it meant and how to be a better skier and a high-level skier, and his imagery is going to be something that will be used for many years to come," he said. 

An image provided by PSIA-AASI of Ron LeMaster.

Over the years, LeMaster published several books and articles that taught skiers advanced mechanics to help them become better skiers. 

PSIA-AASI shared a recent article Wednesday.

Herrin said seminars, presentations and courses held by LeMaster would sell out.

"Whenever Ron is giving a presentation or engaging with snowsports instructors, that's a room that people want to be in, because his energy and love of the sport and his detail and understanding of alpine skiing. He was one of the best in the industry," he said. 

Overall, Herrin believes one of the most powerful things LeMaster will be remembered for is his legacy and contribution to education. 

"And I know I used his resources, his manuals, and you know, you have to have mentors. And I know Ron was a mentor to many in this industry to better understand how they can be a better instructor out on the hill," he said. 

A picture of Ron LeMaster skiing.

"An icon in the snow sports industry, LeMaster was an innovator and consummate professional – whether on snow coaching athletes; shooting photos and videos of the best the sport produced; or writing numerous articles, papers, and books about the sport he loved so much," PSIA-AASI said in a statement.

The Boulder County Sheriff's Office said the collision between LeMaster and a snowboarder happened on the intermediate-terrain Windmill run on Tuesday morning.

LeMaster was unconscious and not breathing when ski patrol arrived and began resuscitative efforts, including CPR, the sheriff's office said. A medical helicopter was placed on air standby.

The skier was pronounced dead on the scene about 11:45 a.m.

Police said the snowboarder, a man from Wellington, was treated for injuries sustained in the collision, then interviewed by detectives.

The sheriff's office said no charges have been filed. Their investigation is ongoing. 

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