Local News

Pilot Identified in Crash

Posted February 17, 1996 6:00 a.m. EST

— February 18, 1996, 9:33 a.m.

A Marine Corps captain is the latest pilot killed in a Harrier jet crash, the plane that has the worse crash record in the U.S. tactical fleet.

Capt. Ronald C. Walkerwicz of Ellenville, New York, died during a routine training mission Friday afternoon. The Marine Corps released his name Saturday after notification of relatives.

The crash occurred just after take-off in a wooded area off U.S. 70. Cause is under investigation.

At least 11 Harrier jets have crashed in Eastern North Carolina in the past five years, and at least a dozen pilots have died in crashes involving the Harrier. They are used at the Cherry Point Marine Corps Air Station. The Harriers are able to take off and land vertically.

Walkerwicz was 30 and unmarried