NIAGARA FALLS, NY – A Niagara County volunteer firefighter and U.S. marine stationed in San Diego died on a California highway Saturday morning, according to a spokesperson for the Frontier Volunteer Fire Company in Niagara Falls.
Ricky Jones, 20, was involved in a multiple-vehicle chain reaction accident on Interstate 8 in the Mission Valley area of San Diego at about 5 a.m. Saturday, our NBC sister station in San Diego is reporting. He died at the scene.
His father, Danny Jones, is a lieutenant in the Niagara Falls Police Department and is also a member of the Frontier Volunteer Fire Company.
Jones was traveling in a pick-up truck with a fellow marine to the Marine Corps Recruit Depot when the accident occurred, according to San Diego's NBC 7. They hit a car that was stopped in the middle of the freeway, and got out of the truck to help that driver. The surviving marine told police he had to jump over the guardrail at that point in order to avoid another oncoming vehicle. He landed on a highway underpass about 20 feet below.
He said he was unsure whether Jones also tried to jump the guardrail or was hit by the oncoming car, but Jones's body was found on the same underpass, below the scene of the I-8 pile-up.
Five people involved in the accident, including Jones's friend, were taken to area hospitals with minor injuries.