Change of Scholarship in the Eyes of Idaho Soldier Survivors | Idaho News

By KEITH RIDLER, Associated Press

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Legislation prompted by the deaths of three Idaho Army National Guard pilots killed in a helicopter crash during a training exercise last year has been introduced Tuesday.

The House Education Committee has approved a possible hearing on the measure that would change Idaho law to make spouses and children of military, law enforcement and first responders killed in training eligible to university scholarships.

Scholarships are currently only available to spouses and children of workers imprisoned, missing, killed or permanently disabled in the line of duty.

Democratic Rep. Chris Mathias said the change could help the spouses and eight children of rangers killed in the February 2021 UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter crash near Boise.

political cartoons

The Idaho National Guard said the fog and precipitation caused the helicopter crew to lose visual sight of the ground and surrounding mountainous terrain. Officials said the crew had completed the training mission and were on their way back to Gowen Field Air National Guard Base at Boise Airport when the crash happened south of Lucky Peak.

“We lost three soldiers during a routine training exercise,” said Mathias, a US Coast Guard veteran. all of us hard enough.

He said he was surprised to learn that under Idaho law, survivors would not be eligible for the Idaho Armed Forces and Public Safety Scholarship. He said that in the past two decades, only one person has been denied the scholarship created in 1972.

Scholars receive free tuition and campus life, including room and board at public colleges and universities in Idaho, as well as $500 per semester for books, according to the Council of Education. Idaho State Education.

Mike Keckler, spokesman for the Idaho State Board of Education, said 27 students had received scholarships over the past six years at a cost of just under $1 million. . Each scholarship is valid for up to eight semesters of study, enough to complete a four-year degree.

Jesse Anderson, 43, George Geoffrey “Geoff” Laubhan, 39, and Matthew Peltzer, 40, were killed in the Black Hawk helicopter crash. All three lived in southwestern Idaho.

Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Back To Top