Advertisement

Marines who died during North Carolina military truck crash identified

By Adam Schrader
Marines who died during North Carolina military truck crash identified
U.S. Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Jonathan Gierke, left, and Pfc. Zachary Riffle pose for recruit training graduation photos in Parris Island, South Carolina in May 2021. Photos courtesy MCCS Recruit Photo/Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island

Jan. 23 (UPI) -- The two teen Marines who died during a military truck crash in North Carolina have been identified by authorities.

Lance Cpl. Jonathan Gierke, 19, and Pfc. Zachary Riffle, 18, died Wednesday when a seven-ton tactical vehicle overturned after the driver tried to make a right turn and lost control near Jacksonville, the 2nd Marine Logistics Group said in a press release. Both victims were pronounced dead at the scene.

Advertisement

There were 19 service members in the truck, many of whom were thrown from it during the crash. Authorities said three patients remain at area hospitals where they remain in stable condition.

Gierke, from Lawrenceville, Ga., served as a landing support specialist after entering active duty in March 2021. He had received awards and honors including the National Defense and Global War on Terrorism Service Medals.

Riffle, from Kingwood, W. Va., also served as a landing support specialist after entering active duty in March 2021. He had received awards and honors including the National Defense and Global War on Terrorism Service Medals.

Brig. Gen. Forrest Poole III, commanding general of 2nd Marine Logistics Group, said in a statement that the service commanders, chaplains and medical providers are providing support to service members after the tragedy.

Advertisement

"My sincerest heartfelt condolences are extended to the family, friends, and colleagues of the Marines who lost their lives or were injured in Wednesday's vehicle mishap," he said. "We deeply appreciate all of the thoughtful community messages we have received over the past several days."

Latest Headlines

Advertisement
Advertisement

Follow Us

Advertisement