CARRABASSETT VALLEY — A Carrabassett Valley Academy student who died Saturday at Sugarloaf Mountain struck a piece of snowmaking equipment on the side of a black diamond trail.

“He did strike a snowmaking gun but there is still uncertainty as to whether he hit something else afterwards,” Ethan Austin, a spokesman for the resort, said.

The permanent snow-making gun is located along the treeline on the left side of the trail as a skier or snowboard rider goes downhill. The skier was on the Hayburner, a trail on the central part of the mountain.

Joshua Waldron, a junior at Carrabassett Valley Academy, was mourned by more than 100 people at a vigil on Monday, the Morning Sentinel  of Waterville reported Tuesday.

It appears the teen was largely liked by his peers and well-known in the state’s tightly-knit freestyle community. A friend set up a memorial page for Waldron on the the social networking site Facebook and the site had more than 840 fans by 9:00 a.m. Tuesday.

Carrabassett Valley Police Department continues to investigate the cause of the noontime accident that ended tragically for Waldron, who was skiing on his own and was not participating in a school event, according to a released statement from John Ritzo, headmaster of the school.

“We are a close, tight-knit community that cares deeply for every one of our students, faculty and staff. This is the first time a CVA student has died while skiing,” he said.

Although the 16-year-old was skiing alone at the time, witnesses were skiing near him and called for help Saturday, Austin said. Members of the Sugarloaf Ski Patrol were able to respond quickly to the location.

The Academy is gathering as a community to support the family during this time, Ritzo said.

“We are currently focusing on supporting our student body, faculty and staff members by offering grief counseling around the clock. Opportunities are also being provided for them to gather and support each other,” Ritzo stated in the release.

About 100 students attend the private school that helps students develop through athletic training with a focus on skiing/snowboarding while also engaging in college preparatory academics.

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