North Carolina Marine Killed in Indiana Vehicle Crash
CLARKSVILLE, IN. – A young Marine stationed in North Carolina was killed January 16 in a vehicle accident in Clarksville, Indiana, according to an online news story reported at live5news.com.*
At approximately 12:50 p.m. on January 16, Lance Cpl. Olivia Kustes, 18, was driving a Chevrolet pickup truck north on Interstate 65 in Clarksville. In the area of 31-W, a GMC pickup truck traveling south on I-65 lost its driver’s side wheel. The wheel flew into the air and over the median wall on the interstate. The wheel then collided with Kustes’s truck in the northbound lanes.
Kustes’s truck then continued on in the emergency lane of the interstate, and the driver of a tractor-trailer positioned his rig in front of her truck in order to bring the truck to a stop. Kustes suffered fatal injuries in the incident, and the Clark County Coroner’s Office pronounced her dead at the scene.
It is not clear if the driver of the GMC pickup was injured. He has been identified as 51-year-old Peter D. Gaetano, of Covert, Michigan. Authorities did not say whether he would be cited for the incident.
Kustes was a Marine at the beginning of her career. She had recently completed boot camp and was stationed in North Carolina. She was in Indiana for a family funeral and was scheduled to report back to her base on January 23.
“She was a lot more than an 18-year-old driver,” said Sgt. Carey Huls, of Indiana State Police, who responded to the scene. “You see somebody who is serving their county, and as police officers, we dedicate our lives to helping others, as well. You see somebody who has stepped up, and it just touches you.”
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