The fatal shooting of a man at a cabin near Willow, who was medevaced to Anchorage Monday night but died at a local hospital, is under investigation by Alaska State Troopers.
According to a Tuesday AST dispatch, Palmer troopers were told at about 7:45 p.m. Monday that a gunshot victim required medical attention at a cabin about 25 air miles west of Willow.
Alaska National Guard spokesperson Maj. Guy Hayes says an AST helicopter had no crew available for the mission to Hiline Lake, and air ambulance provider LifeMed declined the mission due to poor weather in the area.
The Air National Guard’s 210th and 212th Rescue Squadrons launched an HH-60 Pave Hawk helicopter with two troopers on board at 9:25 p.m., arriving at the cabin at 10:07 p.m. The victim -- described by Hayes as a 61-year-old man who had suffered a gunshot wound to the chest -- was flown to an Anchorage hospital as Guardsmen conducted life-saving efforts, but troopers say he was pronounced dead at the hospital.
The troopers remained at the cabin overnight to investigate, and were joined early the next morning by Alaska Bureau of Investigation members flown in by AST’s Helo-1 during a break in the weather. The unidentified man was expected to undergo an autopsy Tuesday, although troopers say initial examination showed he was killed by a single gunshot wound.
AST spokesperson Beth Ipsen said few details were being released on the incident, and was unable to state whether the shooting was a homicide or a suicide.
“ABI continues to gather information to gain a more clear understanding of the circumstances related to this death,” troopers wrote. “At this time there is sufficient information to conclude that there is not a danger to the public as a result of this incident.”
Troopers say more information, including the victim’s name, will be released as circumstances permit.
Contact Chris Klint