Several community members have been asking around to see if anybody knows the details about what took place on Friday, May 27, concerning the death of “Mike” Sheltler. Gail has written a personal e-mail and said that it would be ok to share it with the public. Arrangements are still being made and a full obituary will be published soon.
Email from Gail today:
I spoke with the Teller County Coroner yesterday. What I wanted to know was if he had any idea what precipitated Mike’s death. Of course he got a bit technical and I asked him to send me a letter explaining it as I knew I wouldn’t process it well.
The jist is that he ended up going down a 64 degree slope into the water. I didn’t think to ask what distance he went. The water temperature near the shore was about 56 (12′ deep) and a bit further out it was 52. There was a minor abrasion on his chin and some on the palms of his hands. He thinks that he may have tried to push off from the bottom with his hands to propel himself to the surface. The bottom was very soft and he was in the 12′ deep area. At some point he gasped and inhaled water. The autopsy found a froth in his trachea, mouth, nose and some of the sinuses. The action of the cold water in whatever sinuses he was talking about probably triggered heart arrhythmia. I know he wouldn’t have panicked, was doing what he had to do to survive.
I picked a space in Evergreen Cemetery yesterday and am going to the funeral home this morning to make arrangements. Although he will be cremated I am going to have a viewing. I don’t have the dates for viewing or burial at this time but will have them later today.
This afternoon Cpt. Ben Olsen, and a couple others ( may be First Sgt. Dario Gunderson and SFC Chris Millward, my other EOD son) are taking me to Teller County to pick up Mike’s truck.
I had some errands to do yesterday so Craig drove me around. Thank God he and Bobbi are here. I did go to the doctor yesterday because I know my bp would be high and wanted a script for sleeping pills. The bp is up, but not as high as I thought it would be. Maintaining a 40# weight loss has probably helped. I haven’t need prescription sleep meds yet, the simply sleep and a little Grand Marnier at night allows me to sleep about 6 hours a night. But I know that when things slow down they won’t do the trick. I’ll occasionally need something stronger.
People have been sending flowers. I understand the reason and do appreciate the sentiment. They are all pretty but I would so appreciate it if a donation were made to www.eodmemorial.org. It doesn’t have to be in his name as I’m not sure if the link works that way. If you do and let me know I will make sure to write a thank you and send it snail mail. The internet is great but some times the old fashioned way is best.
If you would like to send cards to Gail through the mail, you can send them to:
57 Hayes Dr.
Colorado Springs, CO 80911