While little additional information has been provided on the shooting death of Jeff Nelson, former chief executive officer of the Juan F. Luis Hospital and Medical Center, there has been no suggestion by authorities that the incident was a crime.
Nelson, who headed the St. Croix hospital from January 2011 to January 2013, was found dead Tuesday on his property in Stillwater, Minn. Since April he had been president of Northwestern Health Sciences University in Bloomington.
University officials told Minnesota TV station WCCO there was no reason to believe it was "anything but an accident."
The St. Paul Pioneer Press reported that investigators were not seeking suspects.
Tuesday night, Government House released a statement from Gov. John deJongh Jr. expressing sadness at the surprise death of Nelson.
"Cecile and I were saddened to learn of the death of Jeff Nelson," deJongh said. "While he faced many challenges at the helm of the Luis Hospital, including sizable debts, we are forever grateful for his efforts in helping to turn around the hospital on St. Croix and his attempts to re-energize the hospital facility and develop it into a premier health care facility for the Virgin Islands and the Caribbean region”
“Our prayers are with Mr. Nelson’s family and loved ones during this difficult period," the governor said.
Delegate to Congress Donna M. Christensen also issued a statement of condolence.
“I was shocked to learn of the death of Jeff Nelson and my deepest sympathies are extended to his family during this difficult time,” Christensen said. “While we may not have always agreed, Mr. Nelson was a consummate professional and his efforts to improve patient care and the financial footing of the hospital will not be forgotten.”