'The Bachelorette' bachelor Eric Hill dies in hospital after paragliding accident in Utah
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 04/23/2014
Eric Hill, a 32-year-old adventurer and extreme-sports enthusiast who will be competing on the upcoming tenth season of The Bachelorette starring Andi Dorfman, has died following a paragliding accident in Utah.
"Eric shared his final journey with us this morning as all his immediate family were able to be at his side when he passed away. Thank you to all of your love and support and prayers and fasting. It was amazing to be with so many of his friends and family yesterday in the hospital who came to express their love for Eric," Hill's sister Karen Tracy wrote on her Facebook page Wednesday.
Hill was a California native who lived in Salt Lake City, UT. According to Unified Fire Authority, Hill's parachute collapsed when he was between 15 to 20 feet in the air near Point of the Mountain in Draper, UT, on Sunday afternoon, causing him to crash into the mountainside, CBS' KUTV-TV affiliate in Salt Lake City reported.
Hill reportedly experienced turbulence while in the air and the velocity at which he hit the mountainside was enough to cause trauma. He had been taken to a hospital via helicopter in critical condition following the accident and was in a coma leading up to his passing.
"He gave us such a gift of a life fully lived and fully shared, and allowed us all to be a part of his last adventure here on earth," continued Tracy. "It is hard to think of life without his bright spark, but we know he is on to new adventures. We look forward to carrying on his legacy here and greeting him joyfully again someday. I love you so much, little brother!"
Dorfman picked Hill for her first one-on-one date of the season, according to Reality Steve, which is typically an indication he was an early frontrunner to win her heart. However, the paragliding accident reportedly took place once Hill returned home and therefore did not occur while he was filming the show, which is still in production.
On Monday, Tracy admitted her brother's medical condition was dire.
"The family is all gathering to visit Eric in the hospital. His trauma is quite severe," Tracy wrote on Facebook.
"Thank you all for your continuing prayers and support. This could have happened to Eric Jonathan Hill anywhere in the world, and I am so grateful that it happened where he is surrounded by loving friends and family. Whatever happens, I know he and all of us feel your love. I know our Heavenly Father is listening to your prayers, and I have faith that this is in His loving hands."
The Bachelorette's tenth season will premiere Monday, May 19 at 9PM ET/PT on ABC.