Grand County Search and Rescue saves man from freezing in Winter Park |

Grand County Search and Rescue saves man from freezing in Winter Park

Sky-Hi News staff report
Winter Park, CO Colorado

WINTER PARK – Early Tuesday morning, Jan 31, Officer Sean Curran of the Fraser-Winter Park Police Department began a search for a missing 20-year-old male in the Winter Park area, according to a statement released by police.

Jace Balbach, 20, of Parker was last seen by his friends around midnight Jan. 30 when they were walking from their condominium in Sawmill Station to the Winter Park 7-11. The report states that Balbach’s friends looked for him for more than two hours before calling police. Balbach was wearing light clothing and had consumed numerous shots of alcohol prior to walking to the 7-11 store, friends told police.

Officer Curran searched for Balbach for three hours before calling for assistance from the Grand County Sheriff’s Office. Grand County Search and Rescue was notified and responded with approximately 14 personnel. A search dog was also requested, and responded from Denver.

At around 8 a.m. Jan. 31, Search and Rescue members located Balbach in willows to the west of Confluence Park, north of Idlewild Road. He was conscious, breathing, and able to speak; however he was wet, and suffered from hypothermia and frostbite. Balbach was transported to the Middle Park Medical Center in Granby for treatment.

“Search and Rescue clearly saved his life,” said Glen Trainor, Fraser-Winter Park Police Chief. “They did a great job.”

Balbach had not been charged with any crimes as of Tuesday, according to Trainor.

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