A Mesa County Sheriff’s Deputy has died while climbing Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa.
Sargent Jason Lhotka was a highly decorated member of the sheriff’s department. He is survived by his wife Elena and their son Nicholas.
At the time of his death he was head of the Street Crimes Overlap Team.
It is believed that Sgt. Lhotka passed away from a pulmonary embolism. Funeral arrangements are pending at this time.
Sheriff Stan Hilkey called Lhotka’s death a blow to the department and the community. “Our hearts and minds are with Jason and his Family,” Hilkey said. “He was a true warrior in the fight to rid our community of some of the most troublesome of criminal offenders.”
Lhotka join the sheriff’s department after graduating from Mesa State College in 1997. Since 2004 Sgt Lhotka was one of three Fire Marshals for the Wild Land Fire Team, he also served with the SWAT team, Investigation Division, and Bike team.
A memorial fund has been established at the Grand Junction Federal Credit Union.
Lhotka Family Memorial Fund
Account number 740808
Grand Junction Federal Credit Union
910 Main Street
Grand Junction, CO 81501