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PLEASANT GROVE -- The grandfather of a boy killed by a rampaging bear is questioning today why warnings about the animal, which might have attacked another camper earlier, were not posted.

Eldon Ives, whose 11-year-old grandson Samuel Ives was mauled to death by the black bear, says today that such a warning from forest and wildlife officials might have prevented the Sunday night tragedy.

Ives, who held a news conference this morning on behalf of his grieving family, referred to an incident earlier Sunday when the same bear is thought to have ripped into another camper's tent. A man inside that tent was batted around by the animal, but not injured.

Wildlife officials initially hunted for the bear then, but called off the search. Hours later, the same bear is believed to have ripped into the Ives' tent and carried off Samuel. His body was found about 400 yards away shortly thereafter.

"To see another camper's tent ripped almost duplicate to what happened to our grandson is distressing," Eldon Ives said.

He added that the boy's parents had told him that "if they had known [about the bear] they would not have camped there."

While saying the family was trying not to place blame or become bitter, "I do think that the [Timpooneke] campground should have been closed down, and there should have been given a strong warning to campers about the potential danger of a bear that had already shown aggressive behavior toward humans."

Ives said the tent the family was staying in Sunday night had been a Father's Day gift -- from Samuel, his 6-year-old brother and their mother.

The stepfather, mother and younger boy were asleep in one section of the compartmentalized tent; Samuel was inside a separate partitioned room of the tent.

Eldon Ives, contradicting wildlife officials' theories for what attracted the bear, said the Ives were experienced campers and had no food inside the tent or elsewhere in their campsite. What food they had was stored in a container inside their car, Ives said.

Specially trained blood hounds cornered the bear Monday near Mount Timpanogos and a hunter shot it to death. Subsequent tests confirmed the animal was the same one that had killed Samuel Ives.

If you encounter a bear

* Do not make direct eye contact, which is an act of aggression.

* Stay calm. Immediately pick up small children.

* Make noise, yell, clap hands and throw rocks to scare it away.

* Raise your arms or jacket to make yourself appear as large as possible.

* Never approach a bear.

* Do not turn to run. Back away slowly.

* If you are attacked, fight back, kick, scream and yell.

Source: Utah Division of Wildlife Resources. For more information, go to: http://www.wildlife.utah.gov/bear/pdf/bear brochure.pdf

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