SGT Kort M. Plantenberg

21 Mar 1991 – 05 Dec 2019
C Co, 2-211th GSAB, MN ARNG
Avon, MN

Sergeant Kort Plantenberg died Dec 5, 2019, when the UH-60 Blackhawk helicopter he was crewing crashed southwest of St. Cloud, MN.

Kort Miller Plantenberg was born March 21, 1991 at St. Cloud Hospital. He grew up in Avon and from an early age was obsessed with helicopters and flying, his lifelong dream.

He graduated from Albany Area High School in 2009 and from the University of Minnesota-Duluth in 2013 with a degree in criminology, then went to work as a correctional officer with the Stearns County Sheriff’s Department.

Kort enjoyed fishing and hunting, served as a lifeguard and on ski patrol, and was a member of the Minnesota biathlon team for the Army National Guard. He tirelessly contributed his time and skills to help friends and neighbors, loved solving problems and met challenges with unbreakable determination.

His sense of service and dreams of flying inspired Kort to enlist in the Minnesota Army National Guard March 1, 2016 as an aircraft electrician. SGT Plantenberg served a nine-month deployment with the C Co, 2-211th GSAB in Kuwait, where the unit provided aerial medical evacuation.

Kort returned from deployment May 11 and was recently hired as a federal technician UH-60 mechanic at Army Aviation Support Facility #2 in St. Cloud. He was selected to start the state warrant officer program in March 2020 and then flight school next fall in pursuit of his lifelong passion. His ambition was to work on helicopters during the week and fly them on the weekend.

He is survived by his parents, Steve and Laura Plantenberg of Avon; sister Isabel Plantenberg of Avon; grandmother Theresa Elliott of Savage; girlfriend Bryonna Anderson of Clovis; trusted canine companion Max; and countless friends and coworkers who will always remember his quiet kindness, gentle strength and generous spirit.