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Ceremony to honor National Guardsmen carries 'deeper' meaning after helicopter tragedy

Updated: December 14, 2019 08:21 PM

Gov. Tim Walz helped honor members of the Air National Guard on Saturday just over a week after three Minnesota National Guardsmen died in a helicopter crash.

Dozens gathered in the 133rd Airlift Wing in St. Paul to honor those who serve their country. It was an annual ceremony to give thanks, but Walz said Saturday's ceremony had special meaning.

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"It's deeper after the tragedy over the last week of losing our warriors in St. Cloud, and I think it's out here to remind folks how important their work is and yet the risks that are involved with it," Walz said.

Chief Warrant Officer 2 James Rogers Jr., Chief Warrant Officer 2 Charles Nord and Warrant Officer Candidate Kort Plantenberg all died when their UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter crashed in Marty, just a few miles outside St. Cloud, on Dec. 5.

3 Minnesota National Guard soldiers dead in helicopter crash near St. Cloud

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