(UnitedVoice.com) – The North Dakota statehouse has experienced an absolutely gut-wrenching loss. A state senator lost his life in a plane crash. Worse, his wife and children were with him.
On Sunday, October 1, state Senator Doug Larsen (R-ND) piloted a plane carrying his wife, Amy, and their two youngest children. The family took off from the Canyonlands Regional Airport in Moab, Utah, in the single-engine plane just after 8 p.m. local time. Shortly after the aircraft took off, it crashed.
Emergency responders received a call from a witness who watched the plane go down. The Grand County Sheriff’s Office issued a press release saying its deputies, the Moab Valley Fire Department, Grand County EMS, Classic Air Medical, and the Canyonlands Regional Airport responded to the scene. Unfortunately, none of the people onboard survived.
On Monday, North Dakota Majority Leader David Hogue (R) sent an email to his fellow senators informing them of Larsen’s death. He said the family was returning home after visiting family in Scottsdale, Arizona, and the senator had stopped to refuel in Utah.
Hogue told his colleagues that he wasn’t “sure where bereavement starts with such a tragedy” but said they should all hold their families close. He told them to pray for the grandparents and Larsen’s surviving stepchild.
The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is now investigating the tragic accident. An investigator with the agency arrived at the scene of the accident on Monday so they could begin documenting the scene. Governor Doug Burgum (R) issued a statement expressing his sadness over the senator’s death, calling it “heartbreaking.”
Larsen’s plane crash wasn’t the only one to happen in recent weeks. In mid-September, US Rep. Mary Peltola’s husband was piloting a plane in Alaska when it went down. Eugene Peltola Jr. lost his life in a remote part of the Alaskan wilderness. Subsequent reporting indicated he had about 500 pounds of moose meat and antlers on the plane when it crashed.
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