On Saturday, Wildlife Biologist Dewey Stockbridge, Fish and Wildlife Technician Brandon White, and State Wildlife Veterinarian Dr. Bob Dittmar were killed in a helicopter crash.
The group was conducting an aerial survey for desert bighorn sheep in the Black Gap Wildlife Management Area.
The pilot, who was privately contracted, survived the crash and was taken to El Paso for treatment. Their condition is unknown at this time.
Carter Smith, Executive Director of TPWD, said Wildlife conservation in the state lost 3 of its finest.
“No words can begin to express the depth of sadness we feel for the loss of our colleagues in this tragic accident,” he said. “These men were consummate professionals, deeply liked and highly regarded by their peers and partners alike for the immense passion, dedication, and expertise they brought to their important work in wildlife management and veterinary medicine."
Both Gov. Greg Abbott and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick also weighed in on the incident Sunday Morning.
“Our hearts ache today for those who died in this tragic accident. Cecilia and I are deeply saddened by this loss and we extend our sympathies to the families and loved ones of the victims. I ask all Texans to keep these families in their thoughts and prayers," Gov. Abbott said in a statement.
“Jan and I are deeply saddened to hear the news of this horrible accident, and our prayers are with the families, friends and loved ones of the victims. We ask all Texans to join us in mourning their passing," Lt. Gov. Patrick said.
It is unclear at this time what caused the crash.
The Texas Department of Public Safety, the Federal Aviation Administration and the Texas Game Wardens are now investigating.