Former Fond du Lac City Council President Rob Vande Zande says he’s received hundreds of messages of condolences about the tragic death of his eldest son since Sunday. Rob Vande Zande says his 21-year-old son Rob Jr. was stationed at Fort Bliss, Texas. Rob Jr., his wife Sara, and three army buddies decided to go swimming Saturday at Elephant Butte Lake, which isn’t far from Truth or Consequences, New Mexico.
Rob Sr. says there’s a lot of silt in the lake and zero visibility. Rob Jr. got tired about a third of the way across the lake so he turned around to swim back. Something startled him, he began to panic and went under. It happened about 15 feet from shore. His father was attending a concert in Fond du Lac that evening and got a message on his cell phone, learning soon after of his son’s death. Rob Sr. says his son loved life. Rob Jr. had a wife Sara who is expecting a daughter named Ava in mid-November. He planned on making the Army his career.
Bob Nelson, KFIZ