Army National Guard Sergeant Drowns While Dipnetting The Copper River

Tragedy struck a U.S. Army National Guard sergeant who died while dipnetting for salmon on the Copper River on Saturday. Sgt. 1st Class Russell Hepler fell into the river and was swept away.  Here’s more from the Anchorage Daily News:

Hepler, 35, was dipnetting with his wife, Shandra Hepler, in the Copper River near O’Brien Creek, south of the town of Chitina, when he was caught up in the river at around 2 a.m., according to the the Guard. “Attempts were made to save him, but he was carried downstream,” the Guard wrote.

Hepler was found in the river by people in a boat after he had drowned, the Guard wrote. They got him into the boat and contacted the Alaska State Troopers.

Condolences to Sgt. Hepler’s loved ones.