The pilot killed in last week’s crash at Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point was once a Parris Island Marine, according to the New Bern (N.C.) Sun Journal.
In covering the funeral of Capt. Alberto Noel Bencosme on Tuesday at Cherry Point, the paper reported that Bencosme enlisted with the Corps and trained at Marine Corps Recuit Depot Parris Island in 1997.
The 28-year-old pilot reported to the 8th Tank Battalion in 1998 before being accepted into the Marine Enlisted Commissioning Program. He became a 2nd lieutenant Nov. 24 after receiving a bachelor’s degree in aeronautics from Embry-Riddle University. He was promoted to captain in December.
Attached to Marine Attack Fighter Squadron 203, Bencosme was flying his AV-8 Harrier during a routine training mission on Dec. 29 when the plane signaled a warning for the canopy latches.
Bencosme was returning to MCAS Cherry Point when his plane crashed in a wooded area about a mile from the southeast edge of the base.
The Corps is still investigating the crash.