The following is a release from the Idaho National Guard.  Please keep the family and those heroes who died in your prayers.

The Idaho National Guard released the names of the three Idaho Army National Guard Soldiers killed Tuesday night after their UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter crashed south of Lucky Peak near Boise. The Soldiers were Chief Warrant Officer 4 Jesse Anderson, 43; Chief Warrant Officer 3 George “Geoff” Laubhan, 39; and Chief Warrant Officer 3 Matthew Peltzer, 43.

All three personnel were pilots participating in a routine training flight.  There were no other personnel on board.

“The sudden and tragic loss of three of our fellow Guardsmen is extremely heartbreaking to every member of our Idaho National Guard family,” said Maj. Gen. Michael Garshak, adjutant general of Idaho and commander of the Idaho National Guard. “I have received numerous messages of condolence from many people here in Idaho and throughout the nation, and all of your thoughts, prayers and support are sincerely appreciated and much needed.  It is very comforting, at such a challenging time, to have the care and support of so many.”

Photo Courtesy of Idaho National Guard

Anderson, a Boise resident, was a senior instructor pilot and had served in the Idaho Army National Guard since 2008. He is survived by his wife and four children.

Photo Courtesy of Idaho National Guard

 Laubhan, a Boise resident, was an instructor pilot and had served in the Idaho Army National Guard since 2010.  He is survived by his wife and two children.

Photo Courtesy of Idaho National Guard

 Peltzer, a Nampa resident, was a pilot and had served in the Idaho Army National Guard since 2005. He is survived by his wife and two children.

Col. Christopher Burt, the Idaho Army National Guard’s state aviation officer, confirmed the aircraft was last contacted at 7:45 p.m Tuesday. Once the Emergency Locator Transmitter device aboard the aircraft was activated shortly after 8 p.m., his team immediately initiated emergency aircraft recovery procedures, which included air and ground search and rescue crews.

Senator Mike Crapo issued a statement praising the Guardsmen.

“I am saddened to learn about the passing of the three brave pilots of the Idaho National Guard during an exercise training.  Chief Warrant Officer Anderson, Chief Warrant Officer Laubhan and Chief Warrant Officer Peltzer answered the call of duty to serve our state and our nation with honor, distinction and courage.  Their service and sacrifices will not be forgotten, and their selflessness will continue to serve as an example for all of us.  I pray for the strength of comfort in the days ahead, and my sincerest condolences are with the families and friends of these heroic men.”

At approximately 12:15 a.m. Wednesday morning, crews located the aircraft and personnel.  The cause of the accident is unknown but an investigation is now underway.

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