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Kenny Chesney Mourns the Loss of a ‘Sweet Friend’ After Helicopter Crash

LAS VEGAS, NV - APRIL 15: Kenny Chesney performs onstage during the 53rd Academy of Country Music Awards at MGM Grand Garden Arena on April 15, 2018 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

Kenny Chesney mourns the loss of a helicopter pilot, whom he called a “sweet friend.”

Maria Rodriguez was among four people who died in a helicopter crash, in St. Thomas.

Chesney remembered Rodriguez as the first one to greet him, and the last one he’d say goodbye to, as he visited the island.

Rodriguez was a decorated helicopter pilot who had flown with the Obamas, and supported rescue missions during Hurricanes Irma and Maria.  She even rode her bicycle for two hours, to get to the hangar where she would fly out to help those in need, during the storms.

It’s fair to say I won’t ever be able to go to the Virgin Islands again without feeling the loss of her.  She was such a huge part of my island life,” Chesney writes before closing with, “So goodbye sweet friend.  I’m sure glad our paths crossed on this side.  See you on the other.”

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