22
Oct
13

Former SD Secretary of Tourism and State Development dies of gunshot

South Dakota Department of Tourism and State Development Secretary Richard Benda ends months of speculation and reveals Hyperion Resources, Inc., as the “Gorilla Project” that has plans to locate an oil refinery in Union County. Benda addressed a standing-room-only crowd of media and interested citizens at a news conference Wednesday, June 13, 2007, in the Union County Courthouse in Elk Point. (Photo by David Lias)

South Dakota Department of Tourism and State Development Secretary Richard Benda ends months of speculation and reveals Hyperion Resources, Inc., as the “Gorilla Project” that has plans to locate an oil refinery in Union County. Benda addressed a standing-room-only crowd of media and interested citizens at a news conference Wednesday, June 13, 2007, in the Union County Courthouse in Elk Point. (Photo by David Lias)

A statement from Gov. Dennis Daugaard on the passing of Richard Benda, who was Secretary of Tourism and State Development from 2006 to 2010:

“Earlier today, Richard Benda was found near Lake Andes, deceased of a gunshot wound. My thoughts and prayers are with Rich’s family and friends. Although he never worked in my administration, I know many people who knew him and are shocked by this news. As is standard practice, law enforcement is treating the scene as a crime investigation. I would refer any questions as to that investigation to the Attorney General.”

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