Women killed in Alaska rafting accident only ones on craft

AP News
Posted: Jun 20, 2016 8:06 PM

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A tour operator said Monday two women killed while rafting a remote Alaska river had been the only two in the inflatable craft when it capsized.

Sixty-nine-year-old Cheryl Minnehan of Elk Grove, California, and 67-year-old Karen Todd of Sparks, Nevada, died Wednesday after their raft overturned during a guided excursion on the Kongakut River in Alaska's remote North Slope.

The operator, Alaska Alpine Adventures, originally said the raft was carrying 10 people, but later said there were five rafts carrying two-people apiece.

The company says the women were among eight guests and two guides on the 12-day excursion.

Minnehan's family is questioning why it took responders 20 hours to recover the bodies.

North Slope Borough spokesman John Boyle says he couldn't comment beyond saying borough police are investigating the deaths.