St. Paul teen drowns in St. Croix River while canoeing

A St. Paul teenage girl drowned Sunday afternoon while canoeing on the St. Croix River south of Interstate Park on the Wisconsin side, authorities said.

Taw Meh, 14, was swept away by the river's current after stepping off a sandbar, according to Polk County Field Services Captain Steve Smith. Meh had been canoeing with a sibling and friends.

Polk County authorities received a call around 3:20 p.m. that witnesses on the river saw a girl disappear under the water. Divers recovered Meh's body around 5:45 p.m.

Meh was a student at the Community School of Excellence, a K-8 Hmong language and culture IB world charter school. Ger Kue, the school's director of elementary education, expressed the school's grief.

"She is one of our students that we cherish here deeply," Kue said. "We're all in shock and we'll truly miss her."

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