The Sweats — Coleman, Traven, their two sisters and their parents — had been snowmobiling all day in Wasatch County. His parents, Jason and Janette Sweat, are experienced snowmobilers and very familiar with the area.
The family stopped to take a break on the West Fork of the Duchesne River. The four children walked about 50 feet away to the edge of a ridge to look down at a creek, when the snow gave way under their feet, causing three of them to slide down a steep embankment, according to a press release from the sheriff’s office.
Coleman and Traven were buried in about 3 feet of snow; the third child was not buried.
Their parents worked to find them, but blocks of heavy snow made it difficult. The father Jason kept digging while the mother Janette left the area to call 911.
The second cousin did not know whether the boys had been wearing avalanche beacons at the time of the collapse, but added that they may have taken them off if they were on their way back home.
The boys were found by their father after about 30 minutes, and the parents began CPR, while "the two girls, as full of courage as their parents, climbed the mountain and waved in AirMed helicopters and search and rescue teams," the sheriff’s office wrote in a press release.
The boys were transported to Primary Children’s Medical Center, where the boys were pronounced dead. Anyone who wants to help the Sweats can donate to the Memorial Funds of Coleman and Trevan Sweat at Wells Fargo Bank and Utah Community Credit Union.
The Utah Avalanche Center intends to release their findings regarding the slide.