Navy Lieutenant Died In Assateague Road Crash

BERLIN — A Virginia man has been identified as the deceased victim in a fatal accident on Route 376 in Berlin on Friday night, and three other victims remain hospitalized.

Around 9:35 p.m. on Friday, Maryland State Police troopers responded to the area of Route 376, or Assateague Road, near Grey Fox Lane for a reported two-vehicle collision. Based on the preliminary investigation, officers believe a vehicle with six occupants made a U-turn in front of a second vehicle with one occupant, and the vehicles collided.

The driver of the U-turn vehicle, identified this week as Hobart Kistler, 31, of Portsmouth, Va., was transported to Atlantic General Hospital where he died.

Four other victims in the first vehicle remained hospitalized as of mid-week, including two at Shock Trauma in Baltimore and one at Norfolk Sentara in Virginia. A third victim from the first vehicle remained hospitalized at TidalHealth PRMC as of mid-week, while a fourth has been released from the hospital. The driver of the second vehicle was an 18-year-old male from Berlin.

The Worcester County Sheriff’s Office and the Maryland Natural Resources Police (NRP) assisted with the incident. Route 376 was closed for several hours due to the collision.

Kistler was a lieutenant in the U.S. Navy and graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 2013. After graduation from the academy, he completed his master’s degree at Johns Hopkins University before reporting to Navy supply school in Newport. He served tours as the supply officer aboard the USS Louisville, deputy director of finance at the Office of Naval Reactors, military social aide to the president, and was serving as the retail services officer about the PCU John F. Kennedy.

A Go Fund Me page has been set up in his honor, the proceeds of which will go to support Kistler’s wife and family through this difficult time. As of midweek, the fund had raised over $28,000 with a state goal of $12,000.

“Words alone will not suffice to describe the life of Hobart Kistler, but we will try,” the Go Fund Me page reads. “Hobart was a true American, honorably serving his country through service in the U.S. Navy Supply Corps. More importantly, Hobart was an incredible human being whose reputation crossed more social circles and networks than anyone could begin to imagine.”

About The Author: Shawn Soper

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Shawn Soper has been with The Dispatch since 2000. He began as a staff writer covering various local government beats and general stories. His current positions include managing editor and sports editor. Growing up in Baltimore before moving to Ocean City full time three decades ago, Soper graduated from Loch Raven High School in 1981 and from Towson University in 1985 with degrees in mass communications with a journalism concentration and history.