The 39-year-old MnDOT worker drowned in Seven Mile Creek last week when strong currents pulled his backhoe into the water. Struck was attempting to clear a culvert to prevent flooding.
Today, Gov. Mark Dayton proposed special legislation that would increase tenfold the pension going to Struck's family: wife Amber and two children ages six and four.[jump]
"Mike Struck gave his life in service of the people of Minnesota," Dayton said through a statement. "It would be shameful to leave his widow and her two young children with a pension of less than $2,300 a year."
Dayton's bill would increase the pension that goes to Struck's widow to almost $2,000 a month--about the pay that would go to the family of a state patrol officer killed on the job.
The bill is expected to be introduced with bipartisan support.
Struck was a nine-year MnDoT veteran and 13-year volunteer firefighter in his town of Cleveland, where he'd received an award for saving the life of a jogger who went into cardiac arrest.
*Michael Struck's body pulled from Seven Mile Creek