MINNESOTA NEWS ROUND-UP: Body recovered from Mississippi River in St. Paul
ST. PAUL - The body of a 14-year-old boy was recovered from the Mississippi River early this morning in St. Paul.
According to Washington County Sheriff's officials the boy was cooling off in the river Sunday afternoon near Lions Levee Park when he was swept under. More than 12 divers, a State Patrol helicopter and searchers from more than 10 agencies with at least a dozen boats took part in the search. St. Paul Park Assistant Fire Chief Michael Kramer says the current in the river is over double the normal speed for this time of year. The name of the teen will not be officially released until tomorrow morning.
A 21-year-old Coon Rapids man is missing after he jumped into the St. Croix River in Taylors Falls trying to rescue his nephew. The Chisago County Sheriff's Department says the missing man and his 11-year-old nephew were fishing when the child slipped and fell in the river just before five yesterday afternoon. The uncle and another bystander jumped in to help the child. The bystander managed to get the child out of the water safely, but the uncle went missing. The search will resume this morning.
Throughout the nation and here in Minnesota, citizens are gathering this Memorial Day to remember the men and women who have served the country and made the ultimate sacrifice. At Fort Snelling, several state leaders, including Governor Mark Dayton, and U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken, will be on hand for the annual Memorial Day ceremony to pay their respects. In addition, the historic Fort is hosting a living timeline of military life event and large-scale military demonstrations. In Virginia, at the President's invitation, the all-volunteer Fort Snelling Memorial Rifle Squad will take part in the ceremonies at Arlington National Cemetery. And several members of the squad will join President Obama in placing a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.
Minnesota veterans who served in Iraq or Afghanistan have returned home, but they don't often visit county veterans services offices - not even those with post-traumatic stress disorder or other problems that may benefit from such help. Director of veterans services in Anoka County, Iraq war veteran John Kriesel says 75-percent of the veterans that visit his office for services are 55 and older. He says the reasons for the discrepancy are varied - some mistakenly feel they are taking away from older veterans that need the services more; others just want life to get back to normal when they return from deployment and deny or don't realize they need help; still others aren't aware of other services like help enrolling in college or securing a mortgage.
It's both Memorial Day and Mental Health Month, and experts say psychological stress as a result of deployment and military life is common. That's why The Real Warriors Campaign is encouraging all service members, veterans and families to seek help for psychological health concerns they may have. First Sergeant Aaron Tippett has been in the Army for seventeen years and served multiple tours of duty in Iraq, and says being treated for his mental health concerns helped him realize his dream of becoming a first sergeant. Veterans coping with what the campaign calls "invisible wounds" can find help online at real-warriors-dot-net (www.realwarriors.net) or by confidentially calling 866-966-1020.
Former Minnesota State linebacker Isaac Kolstad is now breathing on his own. Kolstad was badly injured in a fight in Mankato on May 11th and was taken off a ventilator over the weekend according to a post by his family on his CaringBridge website. The 24-year-old has improved enough to be taken off of life support as well, but remains in a coma with several head injuries.
Minnesota's new college grads have it a bit better than the class of 2013 -- the National Center for Education Statistics' Job Outlook 2014 survey shows that employers expect to hire 8.6 percent more graduates from the 2014 class than last year. The Intern Queen Lauren Berger says there is a lot of competition for good positions, though, and it'll still be a tough job to find the right job. One piece of advice -- in the digital age, Beger says job seekers want to make sure they are searchable online -- but also that the results make a good impression. Unemployment for recent college grads at 12.2 percent, so Berger says it's also important for grads to dedicate significant time and effort to the job search.