Five now confirmed dead in Wrangell Landslide, one still missing

The deadly landslide that struck Wrangell on the night of Nov. 20 is seen the next day. Southeast Alaska is, by nature, vulnerable to such landslides, but climate change is adding to the risk by bringing more precipitation and more extreme rainfall events. (Photo provided by Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities)

Wrangell, Alaska (KINY) – At 4:25 p.m. on November 30, 2023, the body of Otto Florschutz was located and recovered from the landslide debris with the assistance of Wrangell Search and Rescue K-9, Wrangell Search and Rescue volunteers, and an excavator. Next of kin and the State Medical Examiner’s Office have been notified.

12-year-old Derek Heller is still missing. Search and Rescue volunteers and a scent detection K9 team continue with reactive searching as any new information or evidence leads to a specific search area.