BREWSTER COUNTY, Texas — Three Texas Parks and Wildlife Department employees died Saturday in a helicopter crash in Brewster County.
The employees were conducting aerial surveys for desert bighorn sheep when the helicopter went down.
“No words can begin to express the depth of sadness we feel for the loss of our colleagues in this tragic accident,” said Carter Smith, TPWD Executive Director. “Wildlife conservation in Texas lost three of its finest as they so honorably and dutifully carried out their calling to help survey, monitor and protect the bighorns of their beloved west Texas mountains."
Smith identified the employees as Dewey, Brandon, and Dr. Bob.
No other details about the victims or the cause of the crash have been released.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott released the following statement about the helicopter crash:
“Our hearts ache today for those who died in this tragic accident. Cecilia and I are deeply saddened by this loss and we extend our sympathies to the families and loved ones of the victims. I ask all Texans to keep these families in their thoughts and prayers.”
Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick said the following:
"Jan and I are deeply saddened to hear the news of this horrible accident, and our prayers are with the families, friends and loved ones of the victims. We ask all Texans to join us in mourning their passing."
The Texas Department of Public Safety, the Federal Aviation Administration and the Texas Game Wardens are currently investigating the incident.