Body of environmental and treaty attorney found on Washington peak

By George Tibbits
Seattle, Washington (AP) September 2010

Hampered by extremely difficult terrain and deteriorating weather, rescuers carefully planned Sept. 4 how to recover the body of John Arum – the son of top boxing promoter Bob Arum – who died while mountain climbing in Washington’s North Cascades National Park.

After a five-day search, the body of the 49-year-old Arum, a highly respected Seattle environmental attorney and outdoor enthusiast, was spotted Sept. 3 from a National Park Service helicopter at about the 7,700-foot level on the north face of 8,500-foot Storm King Mountain.

National Park Service workers were trying to develop a plan to recover the body, which is in an area so rugged “that people can’t rappel down or climb up to it,” Olson said.

His death devastated his colleagues, said Marc Slonim, a principal in Arum’s law firm.

“He was one of Washington’s premier environmental lawyers, achieving major successes in litigation to protect and preserve natural resources,” often working for free, Slonim said in a statement.

Arum was instrumental in achieving a landmark water agreement in 2007 that ended six years of negotiations between environmentalists and eastern Washington farmers. He also represented the Makah Nation, a coastal tribe that has sought to resume its tradition of hunting whales.

The Mille Lacs band of Ojibwe Indians in Minnesota praised Arum for his work on their behalf.

“John Arums played a big role in our treaty rights victory in the U.S. Supreme Court in 1999 and in other cases afterward,” the group’s chief executive said. “In the 21st century our warriors carry brief cases. John fought for us with wisdom and integrity. We will miss him.”