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The Latest: Woman killed by bear in Alaska was newly married

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The Latest on a fatal black bear attack in Alaska (all times local):

4:30 p.m.

The employer of an Alaska contract mine worker killed by a black bear says the woman was married less than two weeks before her death.

The newlywed was 27-year-old Erin Johnson of Anchorage. Her co-worker, 38-year-old colleague Ellen Trainor of Fairbanks, sustained minor injuries in the attack Monday near the Pogo Mine, about 275 miles northeast of Anchorage.

Employer Steve Murphy of the environmental services firm ABR Inc. also says he believes Trainor survived the frenzied attack by the “hyper aggressive” bear because she used bear deterrent spray.

The women were collecting geological samples as employees of ABR about 5 miles from the Pogo Mine when the mauling occurred. The bear was later killed.

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12:45 p.m.

The employer of a contract mine worker killed by a black bear in Alaska says the animal was hyper aggressive, moving between the woman and a colleague in a frenzied attack.

Authorities say Erin Johnson of Anchorage died and Ellen Trainor of Fairbanks sustained minor injuries in the attack Monday near the mine located about 275 miles northeast of Anchorage.

The two were collecting geological samples as employees of environmental services firm ABR, Inc., about 5 miles from the Pogo Mine when the mauling occurred. The bear was later killed.

ABR president Steve Murphy tells The Associated Press that the bear was 10 feet (3 meters) away when the women first saw it just before the attack. Murphy says Trainor used bear deterrent spray on the bear, to no avail.

Murphy says both women were highly trained in bear safety and awareness.

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11:20 a.m.

Alaska authorities have identified a 27-year-old contract worker for a gold mine as the victim of a fatal bear mauling.

Alaska State Troopers said Thursday that Erin Johnson of Anchorage died and 38-year-old Ellen Trainor of Fairbanks sustained minor injuries in the attack Monday near the mine in the state’s interior.

Officials with Pogo Mine say the women were collecting geological samples about 5 miles from the mine when the mauling occurred. The bear was later killed.

The attack was the second fatal black bear mauling this week.

On Sunday, 16-year-old Patrick “Jack” Cooper was killed after he got lost and veered off a trail during a mountain race south of Anchorage.

Officials killed that bear Tuesday.

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