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Family: Tyson Foods’ Matt Mika Remains in Critical Condition

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A lobbyist for Tyson Foods Inc. of Springdale remains in critical condition Thursday morning after being shot at a Congressional baseball team practice Wednesday.

Matt Mika, director of government relations in the meat processor’s Washington office, was shot when a gunman fired upon a group of congressmen practicing for an upcoming charity-benefit baseball game. Mika, a former college baseball and football player, was helping coach the practice, his family has said.

According to his family, Mika was shot multiple times in his chest and arm and “suffered massive trauma.” Although he needs assistance to breathe and will need additional surgeries, Mika has been conscious and communicating through notes, the family said.

Five people were reported to have been taken to area hospitals as a result of the shooting, including the suspected gunman, who died.

Although police say it is too early to declare a motive for the shooting, there are indications that the attack was motivated by extremist political views.

Several congressmen came to visit Mika at George Washington University Hospital several hours after the shooting, The Washington Post reported.

“Matt Mika, one of the guys who helps us, is here at the hospital,” Rep. Kevin Brady, R-Texas, told The Post. “He’s been a big part of the team for a number of years and just a great athlete, helps us frankly at second base and at shortstop. He’s a great guy.”

Brady was accompanied on the visit by Reps. John Shimkus, R-Illionis, and Erik Paulsen, R-Minnesota.

Mika has worked for Tyson for more than six years. His Linkedin profile says he was tasked with “handling both state and federal issues, including issues related to the Farm Bill and the Committees on Agriculture.”

Before his time at Tyson, Mika worked for the The North American Meat Institute, an association representing the meat and poultry packing and processing industry, for two years, his LinkedIn profile shows. Before that, he worked in a number of capacities for Michigan politicians, including two Republican congressmen.

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