Man killed in northwest North Dakota crash was airman for National Guard

Christopher Brewer, 41, died after the Sunday crash near Velva.

Christopher Brewer
North Dakota National Guard
We are part of The Trust Project.

VELVA, N.D. — The North Dakota National Guard is mourning the loss of an airman who died Sunday, Jan. 22, after a crash in northwest North Dakota.

Maj. Gen. Al Dohrmann, the North Dakota National Guard adjutant general, announced Tuesday that 2nd Lt. Christopher Brewer was part of the Air National Guard in the state. Brewer was driving a 1997 Buick Le Sabre ong Sunday afternoon north on U.S. Highway 52 about a mile north of Velva when a 2006 Mazda Tribute driven by 32-year-old Robb Labonte, of Minot, crossed the center line, according to the North Dakota Highway Patrol.

More stories by April Baumgarten
A criminal complaint alleged Kruger fired 15 shots into Jeremiah Medenwald's vehicle.

The Mazda hit Brewer’s vehicle head on. Brewer, a 41-year-old from Velva, and Labonte were not wearing their seat belts, troopers said in a news release.

The two men were taken to Trinity Hospital in Minot. They both died, the Highway Patrol said.

Brewer enlisted in the North Dakota Air National Guard in 2005, according to a news release. He was an avionics technician with the 119th Maintenance Squadron, a personnel specialist with the 119th Force Support Squadron and the 219th Security Forces Squadron, and a first sergeant with the 119th Medical Group. He was promoted to second lieutenant last year and served with the 219th Security Forces Squadron at Minot Air Force Base, the release said.


He also was a teacher at Bishop Ryan Catholic School in Minot, the release said.

Velva is about 20 miles southeast of Minot.

April Baumgarten joined The Forum in February 2019 as an investigative reporter. She grew up on a ranch 10 miles southeast of Belfield, N.D., where her family raises Hereford cattle. She double majored in communications and history/political science at the University of Jamestown, N.D.
What To Read Next
Both chambers of the North Dakota Legislature unanimously approved House Bill 1279, which expands workers’ compensation coverage for full-time firefighters and police officers.
The 1999 Legislature created the Renaissance Zone Program. More than 1,500 projects have been completed under the program.
Legislation now goes to House.
“The Department of the Air Force deferred to the Department of the Treasury during the (CFIUS) review to assess potential risks associated with the proposed project,” the spokesperson said.