After 64 Years, Family Learns What Happened to Lost Skier

Italian police identify body found in Matterhorn ice
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 30, 2018 2:12 AM CDT
Updated Jul 30, 2018 6:33 AM CDT
Italian police shared this photo of skis found with the body.   (Italian police)
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(Newser) – In 1954, Roger Le Masne spent weeks searching for his older brother, who had disappeared while on a skiing vacation in the Alps. It would be another 64 years before he learned what happened to him. Police in Italy say a body found in thawing ice on the Matterhorn in 2005 has been identified as Henri Le Masne, a French finance ministry employee who vanished on his 35th birthday, AFP reports. Police turned to social media this year in an attempt to identify the body and they were contacted by Le Masne's niece after she heard the story on the radio. DNA testing confirmed the identity of the skier, who had apparently been caught in a storm.

"We had become accustomed to the idea that we would never know what happened," says Roger Le Masne, a 94-year-old mathematician and Christian scholar. "But I am very pleased that his body has been found." He says his brother was a bachelor and "quite independent." The family wasn't notified until two weeks after he disappeared, the brother says. "I believe in eternal life and the resurrection after death and I believe that would have happened for my brother even if he had not been found," he says, per the Times of London. "But it is still better that he has been found, so that we could organize a funeral ceremony for him. He would have been 100 next year." (One of Germany's richest men disappeared on the Matterhorn in April.)

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