Gilford teen who died in Gunstock ski accident Monday remembered as fearless, determined

By JON DECKER

The Laconia Daily Sun

Published: 01-18-2023 11:48 AM

Sydnie Quimby, a 15-year-old student at Gilford High School, died on Monday following a head injury sustained in a skiing accident at Gunstock Mountain Resort.

According to a statement from Gunstock’s president and general manager, Tom Day, witnesses said Quimby had skied off the Derringer trail and hit some rocks and trees. She was said to be wearing a helmet at the time of the injury. 

“She was initially comforted by some of the skiing public until Gunstock Ski Patrol arrived at the scene shortly thereafter,” Day wrote. “The young lady was transported to the base area where the Gilford Fire Department ambulance was waiting.”

“We responded to a head injury yesterday afternoon,” Gilford Fire Chief Steve Carrier said. “We transported a patient to Laconia hospital.”

On Tuesday, GHS Principal Anthony Sperazzo was busy comforting students, but shared resources and a brief statement with parents. 

“This is a sad loss for our community,” Sperazzo wrote. “Students were informed of this loss during first block by their teacher. We are working diligently to support our students, staff and some families.”

Sydnie enjoyed skiing and horseback riding, and was an avid member of the New England Six Shooters, a club dedicated to horseback mounted trick shooting using revolvers and blanks.

“She was a club member along with her grandpa,” said Molly Slombo, executive director of the club.

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“Sydnie was extremely hardworking at the sport. She loved her horse, Mercy, and Mercy was hard to get going in the sport. She put up a fight and Sydnie did all the work herself.”

Slombo described Sydnie as fearless, and someone who volunteered with no complaints and always first to offer up her help at the club.

“She was never scared,” Slombo recalled.

“She broke her collarbone last year, but she still showed up to weekly practices to ride even though she could barely hold her arm up with a gun. She was just dedicated.”

Slombo said Quimby and her grandfather were signed up for another season of shooting and riding this year.

“From our group, all we can say is our deepest condolences,” Slombo said. “Words can’t describe what a tragic loss this is.” 

The warm temperatures this winter have contributed to rough ski days in the Lakes Region, which may have been a factor in Quimby’s accident. 

“The ski conditions this year are horrible. I bet there’s more ice out there than anything,” Slombo said. “Mother nature is what it is.”

"Our hearts go out to her family at this difficult time," Day wrote. "The entire Gunstock family was saddened by the incident today."

An online fundraising campaign set up Tuesday raised nearly $60,000 by Wednesday morning. To support the family, visit gofund.me/53d9f374.

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