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Central Minnesota man killed in backhoe accident

BARRETT, Minn. - A 35-year-old Brandon, Minn., man was killed in a construction accident here Friday afternoon.

Mitchell J. Brethorst was operating a backhoe at the site of the old bus garage in Barrett at about 1 p.m. when a tree fell on the backhoe, pinning Brethorst in the machine, according to the Grant County Sheriff's Office.

Witnesses said Brethorst was digging around a large cottonwood tree that was being removed to prepare the site for a new bus garage facility. He reportedly had dug on two sides of the tree when the cottonwood toppled over, landing on top of the cab.

Authorities determined Brethorst died at the scene.

A funeral service will take place today at Grace Lutheran Church in Brandon at 11 a.m.

The Alexandria (Minn.) Echo Press is owned by Forum Communications Co.