Minnesota governor thanks Navy for support

By Senior Chief Petty Officer Dave Nagle | Navy Expeditionary Combat Command Public Affairs | August 09, 2007

During an Aug. 8 survey of the site of the Interstate 35W bridge collapse in Minneapolis, Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty expressed his gratitude to the Navy for its support of search and recovery efforts.

Pawlenty visited the site with Secretary of the Navy, the Honorable Donald C. Winter, and thanked Winter for the assistance the Navy is providing in support of state, federal and local agencies involved in the effort.

“The Secretary of the Navy and the Federal Bureau of Investigation offered their assets and resources and got them here promptly when we requested it,” Pawlenty said.  “That helps us assure the families of the individuals still missing that we’re doing everything we reasonably can to find their loved ones.

“I want to express Minnesota’s gratitude to the Navy and FBI for bringing these resources, assets and capabilities.”

Two teams of divers from Navy Mobile Diving and Salvage Unit 2 from Naval Amphibious Base Little Creek, Va., have been at the site since Aug. 7 in support of the Hennepin County Sheriff's Office. Divers have been in the water conducting a meticulous hand-over-hand search of the area and removing debris and recovering vehicles.

"Whatever we can do to support the people of Minneapolis, that’s what we’re here for,” Winter said.

All active-duty military assets on the scene are under the command and control of a Defense Coordinating Officer and Defense Coordinating Element assigned to United States Army North, Fort Sam Houston, Texas. Army North provides Defense Support of Civil Authorities as the Army component of U.S. Northern Command, the unified command headquartered at Peterson Air Force Base, Colo., that is responsible for homeland defense and civil support.

For more images of Navy participation in recovery operations in Minneapolis, please visit the U.S. Navy Web site.