Top Stories of 2014 | A Look Back at a Dramatic Year in the Valley

2014 was a busy year in the Snoqualmie Valley, highlighted by some dramatic, sometimes sad, stories and happenings. From the discovery of Baby Kimball Doe, to a devastating explosion, to teenage girls working to stop May Madness, to scary collisions that rendered I-90 impassable near Preston – these were the most read stories on Living Snoqualmie in 2014.

1)  Baby Kimball Doe

On February 12th, police responded to the sad scene near the Kimball Creek Bridge along North Bend Way and discovered a babylocation:balloondeceased newborn in the wooded area just off the road.

Police released information and pictures of items found with the newborn, asking the public for help in finding the infant’s parents.

To date, the baby’s parents have not been located, but thanks to the help of multiple organizations, funeral services were held for Baby Kimball Doe on March 15th.

In early summer, a police crime lab scientist was able to develop DNA profiles from evidence found at the scene. Detectives hope the profiles will help them locate and identify the person(s) responsible for leaving the infant along the busy roadside.

Read the entire story HERE.

2)  Mount Si Group Pushes Back Against ‘Hot Girl’ Contest

In May, Mount Si High School ‘Gender Equality’ group founded by [then] junior Elle Woods pushed back against the yearly

Elle Wilson and her good friend wear t-shirts against May Madness after being pitted against each other in the contest that ranks girls on their looks.

‘May Madness’ contest that ranked and bracketed female students on their looks – then opened up each head to head round for online voting by male students.

In a positive protest, the group handmade and wore t-shirts to school stating ‘Be Above the Madness.’

The story made it to several local TV News stations and was the subject of local talk radio in early May.  A local company also had 200 professionally screened t-shirts made for Wilson’s group, which the group then handed out for free at school.

Read the entire story HERE.

3)  Multiple Car Collision, Fire Closes I-90 near Preston

It was Sunday, September 28th, the end of a sunny early fall weekend, when a the driver of vehicle heading eastbound on I-90I90accident reportedly fell asleep and crossed the median, hitting a car traveling on westbound I-90 and causing a multiple vehicle, chain reaction crash.

One vehicle erupted into fire. Other drivers pulled over to help and pulled that driver, a former Mount Si student, from her car and helped extinguish the fire.  At least three people were seriously injured in the accident, most Snoqualmie Valley residents.

I-90 was closed in both directions for a while, with westbound I-90 remaining closed for approximately 4 hours.  The closure caused almost a 10-mile backup all the way to exit 32 in North Bend.  Alternate roads were also rendered almost useless, with backups through Snoqualmie and North Bend.

Read the entire story HERE.

4)  Tragic Accident Takes Life of Mount Si Student

On February 9th, five people were coming back from a campfire, about four miles up SE Middle Fork Road, when the driver lost control lost control and the Toyota Land Cruiser rolled down an embankment and struck trees and a large boulder.

One male student died at the scene and another male was transported to Harborview Medical Center in critical condition. Another male and female were also transported to area hospitals for their injuries and the driver was uninjured.

Read the entire story HERE.

5)  Massive Explosion Rocks North Bend

North Bend residents were awoken by a massive explosion in the early hours of April 25th when natural gas triggered a explosion3blast that flattened strip mall businesses along North Bend Way near QFC.

A neighboring barber shop caught fire and was also destroyed. Nearby businesses, homes, apartments and an assisted living facility were damaged by the blast.

The story drew all local news stations to the scene, which many described as looking like a war zone. The blast site was not demolished until summer.

Nearby Les Schwab tires only recently repaired its structurally-damaged building. The site is now just an empty land parcel, with cement foundations the only reminder of the buildings that once stood there.  The land is also currently for sale.

Read the entire story HERE.

6)  Body Found Below Snoqualmie Falls

On April 9th, King County Search and Rescue responded to Snoqualmie Falls when a woman’s body was spotted about 200SMRFalls2 feet below the falls.

Snoqualmie Falls park was closed for the recovery mission which involved Seattle Mountain Rescue crew members propelling down the steep side of falls in order to complete the litter hoist recovery mission.

Read the entire story HERE.

7)  Community Helps Police Find Armed Robber

On November 6th Snoqualmie Police responded to the North Bend Outlet Mall when a suspect armed with a taser gun robbed the Carters Store as it opened at 10AM.

Police notified the public of the suspect’s description and the car he was possibly driving that day. Early the next morning, thanks to tips from the community, Snoqualmie Police officers and a SWAT team issued a search warrant, raided the suspect’s home and made an arrest.

Read the entire story HERE.

8)  Suspect Arrested in North Bend Stabbing, Sexual Assault Case

On March 9th a female employee was sexually assaulted and stabbed as she closed Jay Berry’s restaurant in North Bend.  On March 19th Snoqualmie Police announced they had arrested a man in connection with the case.

After a bail hearing on the afternoon of March 19th, the King County Prosecutor’s Office announced the suspect was released; stating, “Initial forensic test results did not match the suspect.”

To date there has been no announcement that a suspect has been apprehended.

Read the entire story HERE.

9)  Missing Hiker, Two Dogs Found near Snoqualmie Pass

On October 6th, 21-year old, Paula Reuter, a Seattle restaurant manager, went missing while hiking with her two black andmissing hiker white dogs in the Mason Lake/Ira Springs trail area near Snoqualmie Pass.

A large-scale, three day search and rescue operation (complete with broad media coverage) ensued. Reuter was spotted by a helicopter on October 9th. She and her dogs were fine – tired and hungry, but fine.

Reuter was taken by helicopter to Bandera Air Field in North Bend where she was reunited with her parents.

Read the entire story HERE.

10)  Hiking Accident Claims Life of Snoqualmie Woman

On January 25th, 36-year old reverend, experienced hiker and lover of all things outdoors, Diane Larson, was hiking with a group Diane3from Climbers with a Purpose at Vesper Peak when she simply lost her footing and slipped.

The accident caused a head injury and took the life of a woman who spent most of her short life serving others.

Diane became on ordained minister in 2011 and in January 2013 began working at Northwest Ministry Network located on Snoqualmie Ridge, which led to many strong friendships Valley-wide.

You can read Diane’s inspirational story HERE.




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