Memorial remembering local hiker stolen

A memorial remembering the life of a local hiker has been stolen. Now his friends are hoping to replace it to honor Traver’s memory.

On June 2nd, Traver Buckelew lost his life in a crop duster crash in Blythe. Buckelew spent a lot of time on Telegraph pass with his running group Maria and Aracely.

Cruz said, “We called ourselves ‘trifecta’ we weren’t always an athletic group and think that’s what really brought us together.

The trifecta ran together for three years.

Cruz said, “He always expressed to us that it was this incredible privilege to run with us we didn’t fully understand it at the time until now.”

They hiked to the top of Telegraph Pass, placed a plaque and bell with the word ‘Ding’, Buckelew’s famous saying and a way to represent you have reached the top.

Cruz said, “He would tease us, he would send us a text or he’d post on Facebook his famous ‘ding’ and every time we got a text saying ‘ding’, we knew that meant he went up Telegraph pass and we didn’t.”

But, now Traver’s plaque and bell are gone and Cruz is hoping to replace it to honor Traver’s legacy.

Cruz said, “We wanted to do something at least in mine and Aracely’s mind something that would make him smile. We honestly think on June 13th, he was shaking his head when we were up there putting his bell up with his contagious and infectious laugh.”

Cruz has reached out to the Bureau of Land Management. They are now working to help replace the stolen bell and plaque.
Yuma County Sherrif’s office doesn’t have any current leads on who may have taken the memorial.. If you have any information, they urge you to please contact (928) 783-4427.

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