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Washington, D.C. (March 19, 2015) – Terry O’Sullivan, General President of the Laborers’ International Union of North America (LIUNA), today made the following statement regarding the tragic, March 10, 2015 training accident that took the lives of 11 brave Marines and National Guardsmen, among them LIUNA National Guard Local Union 1776 members Staff Sgt. Lance Bergeron and Staff Sgt. Thomas C. Florich III.
On behalf of the General Executive Board and the 500,000 members of the Laborers’ International Union of North America (LIUNA), I offer our deepest condolences to the family and friends of the 11 Marines and National Guardsmen who gave their lives in the service of our great nation when their helicopter crashed on March 10. It was with hearts already heavy over this loss that we learned that two of those brave souls were our LIUNA brothers, Staff Sgt. Lance Bergeron, and Staff Sgt. Thomas C. Florich III.
Sergeants Bergeron and Florich were among the National Guard military technicians that LIUNA is extremely proud to represent. Staff Sgt. Bergeron enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps in 1998 and joined the Louisiana National Guard in 2001. He served in Iraq twice, and assisted in the response to several national emergencies, including Hurricane Katrina. Staff Sgt. Florich enlisted in the Louisiana National Guard in 2007, and assisted in the response to Hurricane Isaac and the Deepwater Horizon disaster. In their commitment to their families, their fellow soldiers, their communities, their union, and their country, these two brave warriors exemplified the very best of LIUNA.
While they will be greatly missed, memories of them will live on in the hearts they touched, and with the working men and women whose lives they protected. Through their hard work, devotion, and patriotism, Sergeants Bergeron and Florich, and the nine other service members lost that day left our great nation better than they found it.
LIUNA sends our deepest sympathies to the families and friends of Staff Sgt. Bergeron, Staff Sgt. Florich, and the other service members who were lost in the accident. We also thank all of the courageous men and women of our armed forces, who bravely put their lives on the line to preserve, protect, and defend the freedom we all hold dear.