Three troopers from the Minnesota Nationwide Guard had been killed Thursday when the Black Hawk helicopter they had been driving in for a routine upkeep check flight crashed in a farm area in central Minnesota, Gov. Tim Walz confirmed.
The identities of the troopers weren’t instantly launched, pending notification of household.
The crash was being investigated and preliminary info on the cause was not launched.
My coronary heart breaks for the households, the chums and fellow troopers, Walz stated at a information convention. The approaching days might be darkish and troublesome. He stated Minnesota stands prepared to help the households of the troopers who had been killed.
Maj. Gen. Jon Jensen, the adjutant common of the Minnesota Nationwide Guard, stated in a tweet: Our Minnesota Nationwide Guard household is devastated by the deaths of those troopers. Our precedence proper now isu making certain that our households are taken care of.
The Nationwide Guard stated the helicopter was a UH-60 Black Hawk from the guards Military Aviation Security Facility in St. Cloud.
The Guard misplaced contact with the helicopter shortly after it took off on a upkeep check flight from St. Cloud on Thursday afternoon, Guard Grasp Sgt. Blair Heusdens stated. The helicopter known as mayday about 9 minutes after takeoff.
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Stearns County Chief Sheriffs Deputy Dan Miller instructed reporters that the mayday name got here in at about 2:15 p.m. Crews from a number of departments spent a number of hours looking earlier than discovering the crash, Miller stated.
The Minnesota State Patrol was known as to convey in a helicopter to assist with the search. A State Patrol Cirrus plane, geared up with thermal imaging cameras, additionally helped in the search.
Tv aerial footage confirmed the wreck of the helicopter alongside a tree line close to open fields close to St. Cloud, a metropolis about 95 kilometers northwest of Minneapolis. Obvious scorch marks encircled the flattened wreckage in the snow.
The Guards base close to St. Cloud Regional Airport has been in operation since 2009, with Black Hawk and Chinook helicopters maintained there.
Walz served for 24 years in the Military Nationwide Guard, whereas he was a schoolteacher and coach, however retired in 2005 to run for Congress. He canceled a tree-lighting ceremony Thursday and went to the world close to the crash website.
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