ST. PAUL – State Sens. Jeff Howe, R-Rockville, and Jerry Relph, R-St. Cloud, and Reps. Tim O’Driscoll, R-Sartell, Lisa Demuth, R-Cold Spring, and Tama Theis, R-St. Cloud, issued the following joint statement in the wake of a National Guard helicopter crash near Kimball claiming the lives of three service members Thursday afternoon. Howe served the National Guard for 35 years before retiring in 2017. Relph is a former Marine officer and a Vietnam veteran.
“Our hearts are heavy with the loss of these three National Guard soldiers and our prayers are with them, their families and the Minnesota National Guard. While this particular unit is mobilized for overseas deployment, the fact this tragedy occurred on native soil reminds us of the challenges our soldiers face every day – including when presumably safe at home. God bless these American heroes and, again, please keep the families they left behind in your hearts and prayers, for the sacrifices they have made are something most of us will never know.”