Minnesota teacher killed in Armenian capital

Minnesota teacher killed in Armenian capital

Associated Press
May 20 2004

YEREVAN, Armenia – A Minnesota man who traveled the world to teach
English in India, Tibet and other nations was found stabbed to death
outside his apartment here, his family said.

Armenian police said the body of Joshua Haglund, 33, was found in
downtown Yerevan, the Armenian capital, on Monday night with signs
of beating and three stab wounds. The U.S. Embassy identified Haglund
but didn’t say where he was from.

Dan Blommer, Haglund’s stepfather, confirmed that Haglund was from
Shoreview and had been teaching at Yerevan’s Linguistics University
under the aegis of the U.S. Department of State’s English Language
Fellow program.

“We got a phone call from the U.S. Embassy in Armenia, and they said
he had gotten killed outside his apartment,” Blommer said. “They said
it did not appear to be a robbery.”

An official with the Armenian Prosecutor General’s office, who asked
not be named, said the killing had “personal motives” and voiced hope
that perpetrators could be quickly found.

Haglund last visited Minnesota in March, his family said. He was
planning to leave Armenia in a few days for a trip through Iran before
returning to Minnesota for the summer.

An experienced traveler, Haglund had lived for extended periods in
Japan, India and Puerto Rico. Last Friday, he told his mother, Maxine
Haglund-Blommer, that a recent interview had led to a job offer in
Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. He told her it would be his last
overseas assignment.

“He said, ‘This is my last trip, Mom. I want to live close to you
guys.’ That was his plan,” she said.

Haglund graduated from Mounds View High School, the University of
Minnesota and the University of Toronto.

Armenia, which gained independence from the former Soviet Union in
1991, lies just east of Turkey.