Posted at: 07/09/2013 4:24 PM
Updated at: 07/10/2013 5:37 PM
By: Alan Hoglund and Travis Dill
The names have been released in the double fatal accident on Highway 194 and Bergquist Road. Family members of one of the victims reacted to their loss on Wednesday.
According to the Minnesota State Patrol, 29-year-old Lon-Lee Lindquist, of Cloquet, died instantly in the head on collision. Lindquist's Chevrolet Suburban collided with a well-drilling truck on Tuesday afternoon.
Even after hearing the news, his father, Clifford Lindquist, said he left the porch light on for his son Tuesday night.
“I just want to be able to expect him walking back in the door, and it's not going to happen,” Lindquist said.
He said Lon-Lee's passenger was a foster care patient, and authorities said 47-year-old Troy Berens, of Floodwood, also died in the crash.
Lindquist said his son's first job and passion was serving with the 148th Fighter Wing in Duluth.
“One of his great loves was the air guard. He would come home from drills just floating on air,” Lindquist said.
He said Lon-Lee won two Hometown Hero awards for his service, but his fiance Amanda Bruner remembered him as one of the last remaining gentlemen.
“He just kind of gave off that vibe. You don't get the good guy vibe from anybody anymore, and with him you did,” Bruner said.
The couple just got engaged, and Bruner said she did not know what she will do without Lon-Lee. She said she's still in shock.
“It was just like walking into a scary movie—like it wasn't even real,” Bruner said.
The veteran will receive a funeral with military honors next week. His family will remember him as a caring brother of four, and a son to be proud of.
“Overall I could not ask for a better son,” Lindquist said.
Sixty-one-year-old Craig Sunnarborg, of Esko, was driving the larger truck and suffered serious injuries. Sunnarborg was listed in good condition at Essentia Health on Wednesday.
The State Patrol said a possible tire malfunction on the well-drilling truck is being investigated, but authorities said the cause of the crash is still unknown.