Chris Norris used to live here and attend Mount Carmel High School. The 28-year-old was killed after becoming buried by a small avalanche Sunday at the Mary Jane ski area near Winter Park, Colo.
His body was recovered in a wooded area after he failed to meet some friends.
"I think the hardest part is knowing he's not going to see his kids grow up," said his wife, Lynn.
Chris and Lynn Norris were college sweethearts and shared a love of the outdoors. It was something they shared with their 3-year-old daughter and 7-week-old son. His daughter had been expected to ski with him on Sunday but came down with the flu.
"We were soul mates," she said. "I loved him more than anything in the world. He's the best man, the best father, he's the best husband." His brother, Nick Norris, added, "Watching him be a dad was amazing to me. I was the older brother but I looked up to him."
Chris Norris graduated from Mount Carmel High School in 2002. He was on the rugby team for four years. Former coach, Jack Cushing, said he was a model player.
"I always said to the other coaches, if we had 15 or 20 kids like him, we'd be world beaters, because his dedication , his devotion, was just wonderful for our program," Cushing said.
Chris Norris left the Chicago area and moved to Colorado to attend college. His brother said Chris was the breadwinner of his family.
"Chris did everything he could to support them financially," Nick Norris said. "And now without Chris here, without that support, it's a struggle for them."
Donations can be made at any Wells Fargo Bank to the Christopher Norris Memorial Fund. The money will be used to support Norris' family.