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Hennepin Co. sheriff's lieutenant mourned after unexpected death

"Lt. Kent Vnuk was a colleague, leader, and most importantly a friend to so many."
Lt. Kent M. Vnuk

The Hennepin County Sheriff's Office is in mourning following the sudden death of one of its own. 

On Friday, Sheriff David P. Hutchinson announced the passing of Lt. Kent Vnuk, who had been on the force for some 24 years:

According to the announcement, Vnuk, 52, served in a number of capacities during his tenure, including water patrol, court security, special operations and, most recently, the Adult Detention Division. 

Vnuk "touched many lives within the agency, especially those who volunteered their time as Special Deputies," the sheriff's office says. "Lt. Kent Vnuk was a colleague, leader, and most importantly a friend to so many. He will be dearly missed."

At the time of his death, which is described as a "medical emergency," the veteran lieutenant was at his sister's cabin "playing with his best bud Yeager," his dog, Vnuk's obituary says. 

He's described as having been a "dare-devil" in his youth "who loved all things outdoors" and "wasn't afraid to try anything."

According to his obituary, Vnuk dreamed of owning "acreage up north" as well as a catamaran in the near future. 

"He had an amazing work ethic and served the county with professionalism, integrity, and high, unwavering, moral standards." 

He's survived by two sisters, a brother, a stepson "and his loving dog Yeager."

Neither the sheriff's office nor the obituary goes into further detail about his cause of death. 

A funeral is set for 11:00 a.m. Wednesday, September 1, at Bradshaw Celebration of Life Center in Stillwater. 

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