Dmitri Pajitnov Tribute in Tetris: How Did He Die?

Image Credit: Dmitri Pajitnov

Directed by Jon S. Baird, Apple TV+’s biographical film ‘Tetris’ centers around Henk Rogers, who sets out to acquire the handheld console rights to the Russian game Tetris, created by Alexey Pajitnov. The Russian software developer and game creator helps Henk to acquire the rights for Nintendo so that the Japanese video game company can launch their new product, “Game Boy,” with it. The film offers a detailed depiction of Henk and Pajitnov’s friendship, which led to the formation of The Tetris Company in real life. The film is dedicated to the memory of Dmitri Pajitnov. If you are trying to find out who he was and how he died, here’s what we can share!

Who Was Dmitri Pajitnov?

Dmitri Pajitnov, born on April 11, 1986, was the son of Tetris creator Alexey Pajitnov and his wife Nina. He grew up with his parents and brother Peter in Moscow, while Pajitnov was working at the Soviet Academy of Sciences. When Henk Rogers arrived in Moscow to acquire the console rights to the game, Dmitri was a little boy. He was also one of the earliest users of Nintendo’s Game Boy since he was able to play the same during Nintendo of America founder Minoru Arakawa’s visit to Moscow with Henk to sign the contracts concerning the rights to the game with ELORG.

Dmitri with Henk (middle) and Pajitnov (left)//Image Credit: Dmitri Pajitnov

When Pajitnov moved to the United States in 1991, Dmitri joined his father along with his family. After school education, he joined the School of Medicine of St. George’s University, Grenada, West Indies. As a first-year medical student, he even served as an EMT. Dmitri was an avid skier, as made evident by his being a part of the Heavenly Mountain Resort Ski Patrol, based around Lake Tahoe in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. But sadly, he died at the age of 30, deeply affecting his family and friends. If you want to know about the cause of his death, here’s what we can share.

How Did Dmitri Pajitnov Die?

Dmitri Pajitnov died due to a skiing accident. In July 2017, Dmitri and a friend were skiing at the Mount Rainier National Park in Washington, from Camp Muir to Paradise. While skiing on July 3, 2017, he accidentally fell through five feet of snow into a hole above Pebble Creek from a snow bridge. Although Dmitri’s fellow skier tried to find him with the help of an avalanche probe and transceiver, he failed to find him, leading the latter to the authorities. The officials conducted a search the next day by air but unfavorable weather conditions stopped them from locating him. In addition, the search eventually had to end for a while since the same threatened the lives of the rescue workers.

Image Credit: Dmitri Pajitnov

Ultimately, it was in early August when Dmitri’s body was found “at the bottom of a waterfall approximately 30 meters from the location where he had fallen into Pebble Creek,” according to a statement released by National Park Service. However, the officials had to wait till August 19 to successfully recover the body. “On Saturday, August 19, a team of eight search-and-rescue personnel safely reached the body for extraction by a long line helicopter operation,” the statement continued. Dmitri’s body was thus found after around twenty-two ground and air searches of the area involving more than forty individuals. He has since been laid to rest at the Calvary Cemetery, located northeast of the University of Washington.

Read More: Maya Rogers Now: Where is Henk’s Daughter and Tetris CEO Today?