Serving Northern St. Louis County, Minnesota

Lineman dies while working on storm repairs

Marshall Helmberger
Posted 7/3/18

ORR—Lake Country Power is mourning one of its own. A 33-year-old line worker, Drew Schwarz, of Cook, died on Friday, June 29, while working to restore power to customers near Orr. Schwarz collapsed …

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Lineman dies while working on storm repairs

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ORR—Lake Country Power is mourning one of its own. A 33-year-old line worker, Drew Schwarz, of Cook, died on Friday, June 29, while working to restore power to customers near Orr. Schwarz collapsed around 6 p.m. and despite extensive efforts of the Lake Country Power employees on scene, local first responders, and ambulance personnel, Schwarz was pronounced dead at the scene.

The cause of death is still not clear. An initial report from the St. Louis County Sheriff’s Office suggested that Schwarz had suffered electrocution, but that was later walked back by officials. An autopsy will be performed to help determine the cause.

“We’re piecing together the information to determine what happened,” said Greg Randa, LCP general manager. “Our entire co-op family mourns. Our hearts, our thoughts, and our prayers are with the family of a fallen friend, co-op family member and colleague.”

Schwarz graduated from Sandstone High School in 2003 and had been living in Cook most recently. A funeral service was set to be held on Thursday, July 5 at First Presbyterian Church in Pine City, with Rob Spahr officiating.

The severe storm that raced through the area last Friday morning broke at least 25 power poles, and toppled hundreds of trees onto power lines, snapping miles of power lines that needed repair and replacement. 

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