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This is a list of known fatal bear attacks that occurred in North America by decade in reverse chronological order. In this list three species of bear are recognized: the Brown Bear (Ursus arctos), the American Black Bear (Ursus americanus) and the Polar Bear (Ursus maritimus). For purposes of this list, Brown Bear includes the Grizzly Bear (Ursus arctos horribilis), the Kodiak Bear and the Mexican Brown Bear. Between 1900 and 2003 there were about 52 recorded deaths due to black bears, 50 due to brown bears and 5 due to polar bears. The most recent data is the most reliable and complete, but does not necessarily include all fatal attacks that have occurred in North America. Prior to recent decades bear attacks were not well documented, particularly those which took place in isolated regions. As a result there were more attacks and fatalities than have been recorded as shown here, particularly in Canada and Alaska. Note that not all of these were in the wild and that there are many more dog attacks than bear attacks each year.


Name, age, gender Date Species Location, comments
Kelly Ann Walz, 37, female October 4, 2009 Black Ross Township, Pennsylvaniamarker. Kelly and her husband had an expired license to keep exotic pets. On Sunday, Kelly went out to clean the bear's cage. She threw a shovelfull of dog food to one side of the 15x15ft concrete and steel cage so she could clean the other side. Sometime while she was cleaning, the bear attacked and killed her. A neighbor came over and shot the bear, killing it.
Donna Munson, 74, female August 6, 2009 Black Ouray, Coloradomarker. Munson had been feeding bears for ten years, though repeatedly warned by wildlife officials. A small bear was wounded in a fight with a larger bear. Munson had been feeding the smaller bear. A larger, older bear came up to her house, where she had enclosed the back porch with a wire fence. She was attempting to scare away the older bear, when it clubbed her through the screened porch, dragged her off, and killed her. Wildlife officials ended up killing two bears as a result of this incident.
Robert Wagner, 48, male September 2008 Brown Sundremarker area, Alberta. Wagner, 48, of Didsbury, didn't return from a hunting trip to the Sundre area. The medical examiner's office says (Mr Wagner) found near Sundre was mauled to death by a bear.
Cecile Lavoie, 70, female May 30, 2008 Black Near La Sarre, Quebecmarker. Lavoie went on a solo fishing trip. After she didn't return to her cabin, her husband went looking for her. He found a bear dragging her body into the woods.
Stephen Miller, 39, male April 22, 2008 Brown Big Bear Lake, Californiamarker. A famous bear trained to perform in movies unexpectedly turned on a handler, fatally biting him in the neck. Prior to the attack, the bear had been recently featured in the movie Semi-Pro. Pepper Spray was used to subdue the bear, and no further injuries were reported. The bear was a 5 year old male named Rocky. He was being held in the "Predators in Action" animal training facility at the time of the incident. The bear's fate has yet to be determined.
Don Peters, 51, male November 25, 2007 Brown Mountain Aire Lodge west of Sundre, about 90 km northwest of Calgary. Peters, 51, did not return from a hunting trip in Western Albertamarker. He was killed by a grizzly near his vehicle after going hunting alone. His body was found three days later. His rifle was found nearby. It had been fired but there was nothing to indicate the bear had been hit. Officials were trying to trap the bear but would not say whether it would be killed if captured. Upon capture, the bear may be shot, moved to another area or let go, depending on an evaluation of the bear, said Alberta resources spokesman Dave Ealey.
Robin Kochorek, 31, female July 20, 2007 Black The 31-year-old woman was reported missing on July 20 after being separated from friends while mountain biking at Panorama Mountain Resort, British Columbiamarker. She was presumably killed by a black bear who was right where the body was recovered at 8 a.m. July 21. Indications were that the bear had preyed upon this person or obviously was trying to claim ownership. The bear was shot on site by RCMPmarker.
Samuel Evan Ives, 11, male June 17, 2007 Black Taken from a tent in American Fork Canyon in the Uinta National Forestmarker in Utah County, Utahmarker where he was sleeping with his stepfather, mother and 6-year-old brother. The bear was later killed by state Wildlife officials.
Jean-Francois Pagé, 28, male April 28, 2006 Brown Fatally mauled while staking mineral claims near Ross River, Yukon, Canada. He unknowingly walked right past a bear den containing a sow and 2 cubs.
Elora Petrasek, 6, female April 13, 2006 Black She was killed and her mother and 2 year-old brother seriously injured in an attack in the Cherokee National Forestmarker in Tennesseemarker.
Arthur Louie, 60, male September 20, 2005 Brown Killed by a female and two cubs while he was walking back to his mining camp after his truck had a flat tire at Bowron River, British Columbiamarker.
Jacqueline Perry, 30, female September 6, 2005 Black Killed in a predatory attack at the Missinaibi Lake Provincial Park, north of Chapleaumarker, Ontario, Canadamarker. Her husband was seriously injured trying to protect her. Ministry staff shot and killed the bear at approximately 8:00 a.m. Saturday, September 10, 2005, near the area where the fatal attack occurred in a remote area of the park. The bear involved had already attempted to attack two fisherman an hour before this attack occurred
Harvey Robinson, 69, male August 26, 2005 Black Fatally mauled while picking plums at Selkirkmarker, north of Winnipeg, Manitobamarker.
Rich Huffman, 61, male; Kathy Huffman, 58, female June 23, 2005 Brown Killed in their tent at a campsite along the Hulahula river upriver from Kaktovik in Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refugemarker.
Isabelle Dube, 35, female June 5, 2005 Brown Killed while jogging with 2 friends on the Bench Trail in Canmore, Albertamarker
Merlyn Carter, 71, male 2005 Black Found dead in the main cabin of his fishing camp located 300 km Northeast of Ft. Smith, Northwest Territories, Canadamarker.
Timothy Treadwell, 46, male ; Amie Huguenard, 37, female October 2003 Brown Found by their pilot, dead and most of their bodies consumed at Kaflia Bay, Katmai National Parkmarker, Alaska on October 6, 2003. Treadwell was world-famous for his books and documentaries on living with wild bears in Alaska. State Troopers investigating the incident recovered an audiotape of the attack. Only a few days before, Treadwell filmed himself with the bear that killed him in the background, while commenting that it was a bear just like this one — older, struggling to bulk up for the winter — that posed the most threat to humans. The two were killed on the last night before their scheduled pickup, after spending several months in the Alaskan bush.
Denis Chrétien April 17, 2003 Black Stalked, killed and partially consumed by a large, black bear near Waswanipi, a village in northern Quebecmarker.
Christopher Bayduza, 31, Male September 2002 Black Attacked and killed at a remote oil rigging site in northeastern British Columbiamarker.,
Maurice Malenfant, 77, male September 2002 Black Attacked and killed in his campsite in Gaspé region of Quebecmarker
Ester Schwimmer, 5 months, female August 2002 Black Bear grabs and kills 5 month old infant from stroller on the porch of home in Fallsburg, New Yorkmarker.
Timothy Hilston, 50, male October 30, 2001 Brown Bear attacked and killed an elk hunter as he was gutting an elk in Western Montana.
Adelia Maestras Trujillo, 93, female August 2001 Black Bear breaks into a house in New Mexicomarker and is confronted by the elderly owner who dies during the attack.
Kyle Harry, 18, male June 3, 2001 Black Attacked and killed at a rural campsite 25 km. east of Yellowknifemarker in the Northwest Territories, Canadamarker.
George Tullos, 41, male July 14, 2000 Brown His partially consumed body was found at Run Amuk campground in Hyder, Alaskamarker.
Mary Beth Miller, 24, female July 2, 2000 Black Attacked and killed while on a training run in a wooded area on a military base near Quebec Citymarker, Quebec, Canadamarker. Coroner findings suggest victim was able to get away after initial attack but the bear caught up with her and delivered fatal claw blow to the back of the neck. It was determined that a black bear trapped by Wildlife rangers near the site of the incident shortly after the event was not the animal involved in the fatal mauling. Reasons for the attack, one of very few to occur near a large city, remain undetermined.
Glena Ann Bradley, 50, female May 2000 Black Killed and partially consumed by a female and her yearling. The attack occurred near the Goshen Prong/Little River trail junction upstream from Elkmontmarker, Great Smoky Mountains near Gatlinburg, Tennesseemarker


Name, age, gender Date Species Location, Comments
Ned Rasmussen, 53, male November 1, 1999 Brown Found dead 2 days after he disappeared on a deer hunting trip on Uganik Island, Alaska.
Ken Cates, 53, male May 25, 1999 Brown Killed while hiking on the Funny River Trail near Soldotna, Alaskamarker. Investigators found bear blood at the scene, and determined that Cates fired two shots with his rifle scoring at least one hit. The bear was never found.
George Evanoff, 65, male October 24, 1998 Brown Evanoff was hiking on the Bearpaw Ridge, 45 miles northeast of Prince George, British Columbia, Canada. He encountered a grizzly feeding on a moose kill about a half-mile from his cabin. He was bitten on the neck, but his body was not mauled or eaten by the bear. It was not killed, which would have been in keeping with George’s wishes.
Christopher Kress, male Aug 22, 1998 Brown Killed by a grizzly bear on Saturday while fishing on the South Castle river about 12 miles south of the Beaver Mines campground.
Craig Dahl, 26, male May 17, 1998 Brown Last seen alive hiking in the Two Medicine area of Glacier National Parkmarker. His partially consumed remains were found three days later.
Audelio Luis Cortes, 40, male February 8, 1998 Brown Killed by a single head bite while working with a seismic crew in the Swanson River oil field near Kenai, Alaskamarker
Patti McConnell, 37, female August 17, 1997 Black Died from injuries while defending herself and her 13 year old son from attack near Liard River Hotsprings, British Columbiamarker.
Raymond Kitchen, 56, male August 17, 1997 Black Died from injuries while attempting to rescue McConnell. McConnell's 13 year old son, Kelly and an unidentified 20 year Calgary Alberta man were also injured in the attack Liard River Hotsprings, British Columbiamarker.
Christine Courtney, 32, female July 5, 1996 Brown Killed while hiking in Kluane National Park, Yukon. Her husband was also attacked but survived.
Sevend "Sven" Satre, 53, male June 1996 Black Killed while checking fencelines at his rural ranch in British Columbia
Shane Fumerton, Bill Caspell October 9, 1995 Brown Killed by bear while securing an elk near Radium Hot Springs, British Columbiamarker
Marcie Trent, 77, female; and her son, Larry Waldron, 45 July 1, 1995 Brown Killed by a bear defending a moose carcass on the McHugh Creek Trail near Anchorage, Alaskamarker.
Colin McClelland, 24, male August 10, 1993 Black Killed as a result of a crushed skull after a male Black bear tore open the door to his trailer and attacked at Waugh Mountain, Coloradomarker. The bear was later killed by game wardens.
John Petranyi, 40, male October 3, 1992 Brown Attacked and killed by a female with 2 cubs on the Loop Trail, Upper McDonald Valley, Glacier National Parkmarker. The attack occurred less than from the campground area where Julie Helgeson was dragged from her sleeping bag and killed in August 1967.
Darcy Staver, female July 8, 1992 Black Attacked and killed on the roof of their cabin near Glennallen, Alaskamarker. The bear entered their cabin and Staver and her husband fled to the roof. While Staver's husband went for help, the bear killed her.
Anton Bear, 6, male July 10, 1992 Brown The six (6) year-old victim, his mother and three (3) year old sister were walking down a road, just outside of King Cove, Alaskamarker, when they were approached by a grizzly that had just been feeding at the town dump. The family fled, but the boy was chased down by the bear and killed. The bear devoured most of the victim before villagers could kill the animal.
Sebastien Lauzier, male June 14, 1992 Black Attacked and killed on field assignment near Cochrane, Ontariomarker.
Raymond Jakubauskas, 32, and Carola Frehe, 48 October 11, 1991 Black Bates Island, Opeongo Lake, Algonquin Provincial Parkmarker, Ontario, Canada
James Waddell, 12, male May 26, 1991 Black Dragged from a tent during the night and killed. Marten River Campground, Lesser Slave Lake, Alberta, Canada


Name, age, gender Date Species Location, Comments
Gary Goeden, male found September 1, 1987; missing since July 28, 1987 Brown His partially consumed remains were found at Natahki Lake, Many Glacier Valley, Glacier National Parkmarker.
Charles Gibbs, 40, male April 25, 1987 Brown He was last seen alive following and photographing a female with cubs at Elk Mountain in Glacier National Parkmarker. Investigators recovered film of the female approaching in attack mode at .
William Tesinsky, photographer October 1986 Brown Approached an adult female too closely in the Otter Creek area of Hayden Valley, Yellowstone National Parkmarker.
Brigitta Fredenhagen July 1984 Brown Dragged from a tent during the night and killed at a backcountry campsite at the southern end of White Lake in Yellowstone National Park.
Roger May June 1983 Brown Dragged from a tent during the night and killed at the Rainbow Point campground in the Gallatin National Forestmarker just Northwest of Yellowstone National Park.
Laurence Gordon, male September 30, 1980 Brown Attacked and killed at the Elizabeth Lake campsite in the Belly River valley, Glacier National Park.
Daniel Gibbs, male; Laura Gibbs, female August 17, 1980 Black Killed near Zama, Alberta, Canada
Jane Ammerman, female; Kim Eberly, male July 24, 1980 Brown Attacked and killed during the night at their campsite at Divide Creek in the St. Mary valley, Glacier National Park.
12 year old boy July 18, 1980 Black Killed at Leo Creek, British Columbia, Canada while fishing with two friends


Name, age, gender Date Species Location, Comments
Michael Scott Patterson June 19, 1978 Black Porcupine Mountains State Park, Michiganmarker
George Halfkenny, Mark Halfkenny, Billy Rhindress May 13, 1978 Black All three boys were stalked and killed while fishing near Radiant Lake, Algonquin Provincial Park, Ontario, Canada
Mary Pat Mahoney, 22, female September 23, 1976 Brown She was dragged from a tent and killed at Many Glacier campground in Glacier National Parkmarker.
Alan Precup, male August, 1976 Brown He disappeared while backpacking in the Alaskan wildernessmarker. Days later, searchers found his campsite with his bare skeleton, one intact hand, and both feet, still booted.
Victoria Valdez, 4, female May 16, 1974 Black Mauled to death while playing 200 yards from her home in Glenwood, Washington
Harry Walker June 1972 Brown Killed by a bear that was feeding on food that was left out at his campsite near Old Faithful Inn, Yellowstone National Parkmarker.
John Richardson, 31, male 1971 Black Killed while camping at West side of Rocky Mountain National Parkmarker.
Harvey Cardinal January, 1971 Brown Killed and partially eaten while hunting the bear near Fort St. John, British Columbia, Canada.


Name, age, gender Date Species Location, Comments
Unknown, male October 1, 1968 Black Killed near Atikokanmarker, Ontario, Canada.
Julie Helgeson, 19, female August 13, 1967 Brown Killed at Granite Park campsite in Glacier National Parkmarker by a female bear. Attack occurred during the night; bear dragged the victim off while still in her sleeping bag. Attack site was less than from where John Petranyi was attacked and killed on the loop trail in 1992. Helgeson's companion, Roy Ducat, was severely mauled during the attack.
Michelle Koons, 19, female August 13, 1967 Brown Killed at Trout Lake campsite in Glacier National Park by a female bear.

Although Helgeson and Koons were the same age and killed on the same night, these were separate attacks by different bears approximately apart.
Phyllis Tremper, 3, female September, 1966 Black Pet bear dragged the girl into its cage at the Ponderosa Trailer Park in Prescott, Arizona. The bear's owner shot the animal, killing it.


Name, age, gender Date Species Location, Comments
Gil Haggerty August 1942 Black Killed at Old Faithful campground in Yellowstone National Parkmarker.


Name, age, gender Date Species Location, Comments
Joseph B. "Frenchy" Duret, 60, Male June 12, 1922 Brown Infamous trapper, prospector, guide and cattleman trapped and then was attacked and partially devoured by a huge grizzly. Frenchy crawled back towards his ranch and died in Frenchy Meadow on Slough Creek in the Absaroka Wilderness, Montanamarker


Name, age, gender Date Species Location, Comments
Frank Welch, 61, Male September 8, 1916 Brown Killed at a camp near Sylvan Pass, Yellowstone. A bear was later killed in this area and it was "Old Two Toes".
Charles Brown III, 18, Male 1916 Brown Killed at a roadside camp in Yellowstone National Parkmarker
John Graham, 63, Male May 4, 1912 Brown Killed on Crevice Mountain, MT by a bear that escaped from his trap. The bear lost 3 toes and became known as "Old Two Toes"
Ben Hanford, 49, Male January 1910 Brown Killed at a hunting camp in British Columbia, after traveling there from New York.


Name, age, gender Date Species Location, Comments
Franklin Devereaux, 52, male 4 Sept 1883 Brown Killed in Cheboygan County, Michiganmarker; victim was a hunter and trapper. Both bear and victim were found dead — the bear of a gunshot wound and the hunter from a blow to his head from the bear.


Name, age, gender Date Species Location, Comments
William Waddell, male Oct 1875 Brown Lumber mill owner killed near Waddell Creek in Santa Cruz County, Californiamarker

See also


  1. National Geographic: Hunter and Hunted -- Ambush
  2. Stephen Herrero (2002). Bear Attacks: Their Causes and Avoidance, p.65. Globe Pequot. ISBN 158574557X.

Further reading

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