By Shelby Brown–
University of Louisville professor Carol Hanchette, 62, died in Bighorn National Forest after getting separated from her hiking partner Friday. Hanchette’s body was found Tuesday by search and rescue according to the Buffalo Bulletin. The Johnson County coroner ruled the cause of death hypothermia.
A sudden snowfall made finding shelter difficult for Hanchette’s partner, Richard Cornelius to find shelter after becoming separated from Hanchette. Cornelius called for help Monday morning when the storm cleared.
Patricia Quiggins, a friend of Hanchette, remembers her fondly.
“She’s a very caring, generous, kind person. She was really into the outdoors. She was an expert,” Quiggins said.
Quiggins said Hanchette hiked a lot and was passionate about nature, holding a Sierra Club membership.
“She cared a lot about her students, she’d do anything for her students. She liked her job,” Quiggins said.
On the website ratemyprofessor.com, past students enjoyed their time with Hanchette. She received a 4.0 out of 5.0 on the site.
“It truly deepened my understanding of the world and helped me become a better thinker, one of my favorite teachers at this university,” one review said.
Another review called Hanchette an inspiration as an educator and an explorer. Students called her classes thought provoking, saying Hanchette encouraged critical thinking and discussion.
Hanchette taught medical geography, environmental justice, health disparities, geographic information systems, spatial analysis and globalization in the geography and geosciences department.
“She loved to be in the mountains and she loved to be hiking (and) she was in a place she loved when she went,” Quiggins said.
U of L spokesperson John Karman confirmed that Carol Hanchette is university staff, no other details were available. Sheriff Steve Kozisek was unavailable for comment at the time of this post.
This story will be updated.
Photo courtesy of Carol Hanchette’s Facebook.