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The family and friends of Lewis Ainsworth are heartbroken by the passing of Lewis following an accident on Monday, 22nd January, 2024.


Lewis was tragically involved in a serious helicopter accident in British Columbia, Canada.  Lewis, President of the New Zealand Mountain Guides Association and IFMGA Mountain Guide was onboard the helicopter in his professional capacity as a heli-ski guide for Northern Escape Heli-Ski. 


The cause of the helicopter crash remains unknown and is the subject of an investigation being carried out by The Transportation Safety Board of Canada and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. 


Lewis, who was internationally recognised for his expertise and skills in the mountains, has previously worked as a Mountain Guide for Alpine Guides Aoraki Mt Cook, the Aoraki / Mount Cook Search and Rescue team, as a Ski Patroller, an Avalanche Forecaster, and a Hard Ice Glacier Guide. 


Lewis is a highly respected member of the New Zealand and international mountaineering and skiing community. He is loved by many and will be dearly missed by all those who have been fortunate enough to know Lewis and have shared in his passion for being in the mountains.   


Lewis was 35 years of age at the time, the son of Marney Ainsworth and Joe Tonner. He is survived by his partner Sarah, parents and 10 year old daughter.


Lewis’s family would like to thank all who have been involved in the search and rescue operation and medical care of Lewis over the past week. 


The family and friends of Lewis ask that you please give them privacy at this difficult time. 


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