A British ski instructor was found frozen inside a mountain hut after dying in a tragic carbon monoxide ‘accident’, it is claimed.
Dave Ayres, 36, didn’t realise the ventilation pipes in the building in Austria had been sealed off for winter, the Liverpool Echo reports.
He then returned to the building and lit a stove for warmth while he slept – which is thought to have poisoned the air and killed him.
The pipes were apparently sealed up by maintenance workers in November.
Dave’s body was then found in the hut on January 12, prompting a flood of tributes for the Birkenhead-born man.
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It is understood that the trained chef was born in the Merseyside town before he moved to Greece with his parents in his 20s.
He is said to have also had a degree in tourism and have travelled to various locations around the world before settling in Brand.
Villagers in the Austrian ski village where Dave worked are now deciding how to best honour the instructor.
Fellow instructor and colleague Angelika Beck said she wants to make sure his memory lives on in the area.
She said: “It has been hard to track Dave’s parents, so we will not be burying his body here in Brand for the time being.
“But we will make sure he is never ever forgotten and make a memorial to him.
“Perhaps a tree dedicated to him in the forest park where he worked in summer, or a plaque, or a cross on the slopes – we are working out the details.”
Dave also worked as a park warden in the forest climbing centre and became a close friend of Kai Salinger.
Kai said: “Dave was full of kindness, generosity and humour, always laughing and making everyone smile.
“But very driven and professional too.”
Klaus Bitschi, the local mayor, said: “Dave’s work with the children in the climbing park was sensational.
“He was warm-hearted, and talented – always ready to help everyone. He will remain deep in our hearts.”
A memorial for Dave will take place in Brand on February 5.
In an obituary posted online, his friends said: “You searched for the quiet and found your peace.
“The nicest thing a person can leave behind is a smile on the face of those who think of him.
“We miss the smile of Dave. He was torn from us in the middle of the mountains by a tragic accident.”
Friends who worked with also posted: “Much too early and through a tragic accident, we lost a humorous, helpful voice and good-hearted joy.
“Dear Dave, thank you for always making us laugh with your cheerful, cheerful manner.
“We will miss your sunny disposition when we are together in the stable. Your stable friends.”