NATCHITOCHES PARISH, LA (WAFB) - A member of the Louisiana National Guard was killed and another was injured when their military Humvee flipped after being rear-ended by an 18-wheeler Tuesday afternoon.
The dead guardsman was identified as Sgt. Kevin Weiner, 30, of Shreveport. His passenger was Sgt. John Fike, 32, of Bossier City.
The crash happened on I-49 just north of LA 6 in Natchitoches Parish around 3:15 p.m.
The Louisiana State Police said the pair was part of a military convoy headed back to Shreveport after helping Hurricane Isaac victims in the Hammond area.
"The Louisiana State Police and the Louisiana National Guard share a partnership which is based on a commitment to public safety and service to our citizens," said Col. Mike Edmonson, superintendent of the Louisiana State Police. "Troopers and guardsmen have stood shoulder to shoulder across Louisiana for incidents and events which have affected our state. This tragic event has left our hearts heavy for the soldiers and airmen of the Louisiana National Guard and our thoughts and prayers are with the families of those involved."
Troopers said Weiner was driving about 55 mph in the last vehicle in the convoy when a tractor trailer hit it from behind. They reported the Humvee overturned and ended up in the median. The big rig also veered off the interstate into the median.
Weiner was pronounced dead at the scene. Fike was taken to Natchitoches Parish Hospital. The extent of his injuries was not released. His condition is unknown. The driver of the semi was not injured. All three were properly buckled up.
Investigators reported the trucker was driving faster than the convoy, but charges have not been filed. They said routine toxicology tests and charges are pending. The investigation is ongoing.
Weiner had been with the Louisiana National Guard for 12 years. He was part of the 165th CSSB Unit from Bossier City. He and the other guardsmen were in charge of logistics regarding the transportation of relief supplies for Isaac victims when they were in Hammond.