Altitude sickness, not space alien attack, cited as reason for Nederland marshal’s resignation

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The Barker Reservoir overlooking Nederland, Colo. (Credit: Wikimedia Commons / Sunpowerpack)

The Barker Reservoir overlooking Nederland, Colo. (Credit: Wikimedia Commons / Sunpowerpack)

NEDERLAND, Colo. — Just six months after moving from Detroit to Nederland to accept a job as the town’s marshal, Jim Matheney resigned due to struggles adjusting to the altitude, according to a report.

A town hall meeting was held in Nederland to announce the news, the Boulder Daily Camera reported, and also to address some swirling rumors about Matheney’s resignation.

One of those rumors, according to the Camera report, was that Matheney had been attacked by space aliens.

Instead, Town Administrator Alisha Reis said, Matheney’s only reason for retiring was the town’s altitude of 8,400 feet.

“He simply has not physically acclimated to the altitude,” Reis said. “We really thought he was going to be a long term hire. He was really great. It’s just a shame.”

Living at a lower elevation and commuting to Nederland was not an option for Matheney, Reis continued, considering the marshal, who is in charge of the area’s police force, is required to live within five miles of town.

The Camera did not elaborate on the alien rumors, though Nederland has developed a reputation for harboring some quirky residents over the years.

The town is perhaps best known for its world-famous “Frozen Dead Guy Days,” an annual festival that celebrates former resident Bredo Morstel, who had his body cryogenically frozen in a shed in hopes that he might one day be resurrected.

Before he came to Nederland, Matheney was a captain in charge of patrol for a police department in suburban Detroit.

Matheney will be replaced in the interim by Paul Carrill, who retired to Nederland in 2012 after serving as a sheriff’s department commander in Kansas City, Mo.

Depending on how Carrill’s six month run as marshal progresses, he could take over as the town’s permanent marshal, both he and Reis confirmed.