North Texas

Boy Scout, Volunteer from North Texas Killed on Camping Trip

Two North Texans were killed when a storm rolled through a Boy Scout camp in northern Minnesota.

It happened Thursday morning near Basswood Lake along the Canadian border.

An adult assistant leader and Boy Scout were killed. They have been identified as 39-year-old Nickie Lac, of Carrollton, and 13-year-old Christian Sanchez, of Lewisville.

Prayer vigils for the two victims were held on Thursday evening.

Dozens attended the vigil for Sanchez at St. Andrew United Methodist Church in Plano, where his family was longtime members.

Family friends described Sanchez as friendly, energetic and interested in sports.

The Boy Scouts troop was camping near an area called the Northern Tier Adventure Base in northern Minnesota when powerful storms rolled through.

Winds became so strong they snapped some large trees in half.

At this time, the cause of the deaths remains unknown.

The Boy Scouts of America, based in Irving, says two other campers were injured. It's believed one Scout was pinned under a fallen tree.

John Van Deese, general manager for the Northern Tier High Adventure Program, says they received a mayday call from the camp at about 4 a.m.

"They were on their last night of camping and they were scheduled to canoe back here to Moose Lake,” he said.

The Boy Scouts of America issued the following statement:

"This is a very difficult time for our Scouting family. During the early morning hours of Thursday, July 21, a severe storm with strong straight-line winds unexpectedly came through Charles L Sommers Canoe Base at Northern Tier. We're extremely saddened to confirm that falling trees resulting from this storm caused the death of two attendees – a youth member and an adult volunteer leader – as well as two injured youth members who sustained non-life threatening injuries. These two youth were transported to the nearest hospital by Canadian emergency crews, out of an abundance of caution."

"The safety and well-being of our participants is our top priority. Immediately following the radio distress call, we contacted the local authorities for support, and began making contact with all crews on-site to offer assistance and assure the safety of all involved."

"Our focus is providing support to our Scouting family in any way that we can. We are mindful of the Scouts present on the outing and the impact the incident had on them, and will be offering grief counseling to our members and volunteers. Please join us in keeping these families in your thoughts."

Funeral arrangements for Sanchez and Lac are pending.

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