Dr. Matt Hillmann told KDHL AM Minnesota listeners Wednesday the Northfield community was devasted by the news of the passing of Father Denny.

Father Dennis Dempsey was killed after being struck on his bicycle in Rosemount Monday afternoon.  The 73 year old preferred to be called Father Denny.

Dr. Hillman called him, "A giant in this town. His reach extended far beyond his parish community, which I happen to be a part of.  People in town just knew Father Denny as an advocate for the kind of town that (people) want to live in. Respect for humanity, making sure we took care of people.  Father Denny was a strong advocate in support for our hispanic community and for the less fortunate.  The poorer segments of our community.  I just want to lift it up and share that our whole community is grieving the loss."

The Northfield Public Schools Superintendent remarked, "Even though Father Denny left a couple years ago, he retired, then went to do missionary work in Venezuela, retired again, came back and was the Pastor at a church in Burnsville.  I think that just all Northfielders today grieve the loss of Father because he was so much more than just a Parish Pastor.  He was really a fixture in our community and someone who did a lot of great work."

HIllmann commented, "He was the 2017 recipient of the (Northfield) Human Rights Commission Human Rights Award.  So his reach extended very far.  So we need to take a moment today and acknowledge the loss of that giant in our community."

More details surrounding the accident were revealed today after the 26 year old Minneapolis man arrested in alleged connection with the death made his first court appearance.

Rosemount police say both Father Denny and the man operating the vehicle that struck him were going west on County Road 42 (145th Street) near Auburn Avenue in Rosemount when the 3:30 p.m. collision happened.

Dempsey was riding his bike on the far shoulder of the road according to the Rosemount Police report.

Trejean Derrell Curry was arrested following the crash and held with no bail on suspicion of criminal vehicular homicide.

According to authorities Curry was driving with a revoked license and has been convicted nine times of driving without a license.

Court records show Curry's most recent arrest occured September 21, 2021 when he was convicted of going 100 mph in a 70 mph zone.  His license had been revoked in July.

Trejean Derrell Curry, 26, Minneapolis. Dakota County Jail Photo.

You can listen to a podcast of the KDHL AM Minnesota show below.

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