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Originally published Saturday, September 4, 2010 at 1:08 PM

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Body of boxing promoter's son found on Wash. peak

Hampered by extremely difficult terrain and deteriorating weather, rescuers carefully planned Saturday 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.

Associated Press Writer

SEATTLE —

Hampered by extremely difficult terrain and deteriorating weather, rescuers carefully planned Saturday 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.

"This is going to be a fairly technical and high-risk recovery," park spokeswoman Kerry Olson said, adding that "conditions have to be ideal."

"We don't want to put any of our rescuers' lives at risk doing this," she said.

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

Olson said previous flights had been made in this area, but recent snow melt made it possible to locate the body. She said it appeared that Arum, an experienced mountain climber, had fallen.

A day pack belonging to Arum was found higher on the mountain on Thursday, and Olson said the body was about 300 feet below that spot in an extremely steep area with a lot of loose rock.

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.

The search began Monday after Arum failed to return from a solo weekend trip to scale the mountain, about 85 miles northeast of Seattle. Family members said the climb was part of Arum's goal of reaching the summit of the 100 highest peaks in the state. Olson said he had planned to climb the peak Aug. 28, so he probably died that day.

Clouds, rain and wind have moved into the area, and the National Weather Service forecast a chance of snow by Saturday night. The weather is expected to remain cold and cloudy through Wednesday.

Earlier this week, Bob Arum joined park rangers coordinating the search effort, leaving a tour to promote the Nov. 13 fight between Manny Pacquiao and Antonio Margarito. Representatives of Bob Arum were not immediately available for comment.

Arum got his undergraduate degree in political science from Reed College in Oregon and graduated from the University of Washington Law School. He was a longtime board member of the Washington Environmental Council, an advocacy group linking more than 50 organizations in the state.

"He was a brilliant lawyer and he was the epitome of volunteerism," said Clifford Traisman, the council's Olympia lobbyist. "The environmental community and many others are going to miss him terribly. He was a good friend, so it's very sad."

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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.

"John was a passionate advocate for environmental protection and sound environmental policy. While, on occasion, John and the Department of Natural Resources were at odds, we all agreed that the beauty of Washington's wild places was worth protecting," said state Commissioner of Public Lands Peter Goldmark.

"We have lost a friend who never stopped advocating for the public interest."

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