In Memory

Craig Elmer Kelly

Deceased Classmate: Craig Elmer Kelly Date Deceased: January-20-2003 Age at Death: 36 Cause of Death: Caught in an avalanche on the Durrand Glacier in Revelstoke, British Columbia Classmate City: Nelson Classmate State: BC Classmate Country: Canada Survived By: by his partner, Savina Findlay, his daughter, Olivia, his father, Patrick Kelly, his mother, Janet Hansen, his brothers and sisters Brian, Gillian, Jessica, and Joshua and all the people whose lives he's touched. They call him the "Godfather" of Snowboarding. 4x overall world champion. Dropping out of UW getting a degree in Chemical Engineering wasn't such a bad idea. Craig went on to become a hero to many, but more importantly many people's friend. He traveled the world over snowboarding & having experiences many people only dream about. He rode for Burton, and was influencial in re-designing much of their gear, which brought a lot of success to the Burton name. Getting tired of the commercialization of snowboarding, Craig moved to Canada to become one of the first guides certified in the backcountry on a split board. With the recent birth of his daughter Olivia, life seemed like it couldn't get any better. Unfortunately on January 20, 2003 while on the Durrand Glacier guiding a group in the backcountry, as fate would have it, they were caught in an avalanche. There were 13 buried, with the avalanche killing 6 people along with Craig that day. Veteran Filmmaker Jacques Russo has made his biggest work to date, "Let it Ride." The feature-length documentary spans over 25 years and follows snowboardings biggest icon and World Champion Craig Kelly from his early rides as a Mt. Baker Hardcore all the way to his final days and the events that lead him to his death with six others in an avalanche in January 2003 while studying to become the first accredited mountain guide on a snowboard.This film truly speaks to who Craig was.

In 2013 Craig Kelly was inducted into the US Ski/Snowboard Hall of Fame. The following is a link to the page from their website, and a You Tube video of Craig's achievements, and his brother's acceptance speech on Craig's behalf.