Local News

Worker Killed at RDU International Airport

Posted July 31, 2007
Updated August 1, 2007

— An American Eagle Airlines employee trapped between an airport vehicle and the nose of an airplane was killed Tuesday night, an airline spokesman said.

The accident involved a ramp vehicle that the victim, Lufuluabo Kalonji, 43, a fleet service clerk, was driving at Gate C23 sometime before 9 p.m., an American Eagle spokesperson said. No one was on the plane at the time.

The airline is investigating the accident.

American Eagle President Peter Bowler released a statement Wednesday, in which he offered his condolences.

“I know that a tragedy like this affects every member of the Eagle family and that our hearts go out to the Kalonji family, friends, and to our Eagle colleagues in Raleigh-Durham,” Bowler said. “Please keep the Kalonji family in your thoughts and prayers.”

No flights were canceled or delayed because of the accident, and airport officials did not expect any disruptions.

Kalonji is survived by his wife and a young daughter.

American Eagle established a fund at the American Airlines Credit Union for those wishing to contribute to the family.