Big Air champion Sam Jackenthal has died, community mourns
October 3, 2015
U.S. Freeskiing and the entire U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association family joined the Park City community in mourning the passing of Sam Jackenthal, a wonderful young man and a remarkable athlete. The 16-year-old freeskiing champion passed away this week from injuries suffered in a training accident in Australia several weeks ago, with his family at his side.
A Park City native, Jackenthal grew up on the mountain and was passionate about freeskiing. Last winter, skiing for Team Park City United, he won the combined title (slopestyle, halfpipe, big air) at the USSA Junior Nationals. His coach Chris "Hatch" Haslock remembered him as "a treasured member of the Team Park City United Family and one who always brought the highest level of competition, character, humor and camaraderie with him to the hill."
"As our community and his family have kept vigil these past few weeks, we’ve all learned so much about Sam as a remarkable person who brought joy to those around him and an athlete who was achieving his dream," said USSA President and CEO Tiger Shaw. "Our hearts go out to the Jackenthals, as well as their extended family with Team Park City United."
Plans have not yet been established for any memorial services.
For more information, see Team Park City United’s Facebook page.
Sam’s dad, Ron Jackenthal, posted the news on his Facebook:
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"We are heartbroken to share that Sam passed away late last night in Australia with his immediate family at his side. We believe that while his physical body is no longer with us, his light and spirit will continue to shine bright and bring happiness to us all, just as he always has. It is our hope, that his incredible drive, compassion and passion for life can inspire others to live life to the very fullest."
According to the young freeskier’s coach, Chris Haslock , "Sam brought light and love to everyone who knew him — he made their lives better than before they met. I am comforted knowing that Sam’s life was full of everything he loved. He lived to the fullest with passion and enthusiasm — an unabashed love for life. It was said, "Sam showed us the best qualities within each of us." "In 16 years, Sam figured out how to live life better than most people three times his age." We are fortunate to have been in his presence and have the extreme privilege of knowing and loving such a unique and extraordinary individual. He truly lived a lifetime in 16 years."