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Virtual memorial held for victim of deadly Millcreek avalanche

(Photo Credit: Lismore Nebeker)

SALT LAKE CITY — A virtual memorial was held for one of the victims of the Millcreek avalanche. Eight skiers were in the Wilson Glade area of Millcreek Canyon when authorities say an avalanche struck. 

Four skiers were pronounced dead when Utah Avalanche Search and Rescue arrived. 

Stephanie Hopkins, 26, was buried in the avalanche while backcountry skiing in this area with friends on Feb. 6. 

virtual memorial

(Photo Credit: Lismore Nebeker)

Lismore Nebeker, a friend of Hopkins’, organized the event, hoping to include everyone Hopkins touched. Though hundreds of people would have gone to the memorial, COVID-19 prevented many from showing in person. 

Nebeker created a satellite link so friends and family from all over could join in celebrating her friend’s life.

“This is what Stephanie would have wanted. For every single person to feel included,” Nebeker said. 

Immediate family and close friends came together on Feb. 15, 2021, to celebrate Hopkins’ life together. Nebeker recalls over 500 people being on the virtual memorial at once. 

The service was held in a private location where only a limited number of people could join. Hopkins’ friend Kylie Burr expressed how incredible she was; her fiancé Jake Herrmann spoke at the service. 

“We got very lucky to share a best friend. She was always open to loving new people, loved the outdoors. [Stephanie] lived a very full life,” Herrmann recalled. “It was difficult to hold a service, just close family and close friends.”

Herrmann was able to speak about Hopkins and the importance of friendship.

“We can keep Stephanie alive by continuing friendships, and showcase all the amazing things she was able to accomplish.”

Virtual memorial

Stephanie graduating from the University of Utah. (Photo credit: Jake Herrmann)

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