They were heading out from their military base on their way to do their duty at the funeral of a WW2 veteran and former Army officer. However, several members of the Ft Bragg Honor Guard did not expect to encounter their own tragedy in the form of a logging truck coming down US 15-501 near Charlotte.
According to reports, serviceman Richard Horton, 22 was intent on his driving his van. The van had poor visibility from some angles, and Horton stated that he relied on his fellow passenger in the front seat to look for traffic. Unfortunately, the logging truck was missed. The logging truck which was estimated to have been going at 55 miles per hour struck the passenger side of the passenger van, crumpling it inward and rolling the vehicle with the 82nd Airborne Division Honor Guard members inside, causing it to slide over 70 feet down the road. They remained there, several of them trapped within the twisted steel for over 45 minutes until they could be freed by emergency responders
At least 5 members of the 10-person Honor Guard detail are considered to be in critical condition, two of whom had to be airlifted the University of North Carolina Health Care in Chapel Hill. Three other Honor Guard members were taken to Scotland Memorial Hospital. Richard Horton was charged with failure to yield right-of-way.
The driver of the tractor trailer, Donald George Stone, 42, also reported pain however was not hospitalized. He was not charged and faces no citations for the crash.
Another detail from the North Carolina National Guard was dispatched to serve as Honor Guard for the funeral while the rescue attempt was underway.
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