Public Service For West Glacier Man Killed by Bear Scheduled for Thursday

Brad Treat was killed when biking on Forest Service land near Glacier National Park last week

By Justin Franz
Brad Treat. Courtesy photo

A memorial service for the 38-year-old man killed by a bear while biking near Glacier National Park will be held on Thursday at Legends Field in Kalispell.

Brad Treat was mountain biking in the Half Moon Lakes area near West Glacier when he ran into a bear. The bear attacked and killed Treat. A family member who was biking with Treat was unharmed and able to summon help.

Treat was a U.S. Forest Service law enforcement officer and grew up in the Flathead Valley, graduating from Flathead High School in 1996.

The celebration of life on July 7 will start at 10 a.m. at Flathead’s Legends Field at the intersection of 12th Street West and 3rd Avenue West in Kalispell.

In lieu of flowers, the family has set up a scholarship fund with Flathead High School Athletic Division in memory of Treat. Memorial donations checks can be made to Kalispell Public Schools, in memory of Brad Treat and mailed to Glacier Bank, 202 Main Street, Kalispell, Montana, 59901.

Treat was one of Montana’s best distance runners and helped form the long-distance dynasty at Flathead High School in the mid-1990s.

Early reports suggested the bear that mauled Treat was a grizzly but investigators have since dialed that back while they await DNA evidence to confirm what type of animal it was. If it was indeed a grizzly bear, Treat’s death would be the first fatal attack in Northwest Montana since 2001, when an elk hunter was killed on the Blackfoot Clearwater Game Range near Ovando.

Grizzly bear attacks are rare in the Glacier region but not unheard of. Since Glacier National Park was created in 1910, there have been 10 fatal grizzly attacks in the national park, the most recent in May 1998 when a 26-year-old man was killed hiking in the Upper Two Medicine Valley.

Northwest Montana is home to the largest grizzly bear population in the lower 48 states with approximately 1,000 bears living in the region.

There have been six fatal grizzly bear attacks since 2010 in the Yellowstone region of Montana, Wyoming and Idaho.

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