COBLESKILL, N.Y. (WTEN) – Members of the Cobleskill community are in mourning after learning that 3rd Class Petty Officer Donald Alton Thorington was shot and killed in Virginia on Sunday, May 5.
Lance Hill, a close family friend, said Thorington enlisted in the Navy three years ago and was always trying to better himself.
“He was looking to further his education and not accrue a big debt loan,” explained Hill. “He did a lot of research first, then decided the Navy was the route he wanted to go because of the on-the-job training and schooling he could get through them.”
According to Hill, Thorington was very bright and was able to obtain a near perfect score on his nuclear naval tests. He placed 3rd out of 400 students taking the same course.
Thorington was a graduate of Cobleskill-Richmondville High School, and as a student, took part in many of the school’s extra-curricular activities.
“He was an outstanding youth. He took a lot of self-drive and motivation, had a love for football and track and field, especially the shot put,” Hill said.
Thorington was working hard to move up in military rank.
“He was well on his way to being an officer,” said Hill. “That was his goal.”
Police detectives are investigating Thorington’s death as a homicide.