Brigadier General and father of five killed in hit-and-run crash

ROCHESTER, NH – The New Hampshire Air National Guard is mourning the loss of one of its top leaders after a tragic hit-and-run incident on Monday claimed the life of Brigadier General John Pogorek. The Rochester Police Department confirmed the fatal accident in a social media post on Tuesday, identifying Pogorek, 57, as the victim.

Initial investigations suggest that Pogorek, a married father of five, had pulled over his 2014 Toyota Tundra to secure a load when he was struck by a red Toyota RAV4. The driver, later identified as 81-year-old Paul Clement, continued driving after the collision. Authorities have yet to determine if Clement will face charges.

A juvenile passenger in Pogorek’s vehicle was unharmed, according to police. The incident left the community in shock and sparked an outpouring of condolences from state officials and military colleagues.

Pogorek’s distinguished military career began with his graduation from the U.S. Air Force Academy in 1989. He joined the New Hampshire Air National Guard in 1999 and rose through the ranks to become its commander in June 2022. His previous roles included commanding the 157th Air Refueling Wing and the 157th Operations Group at Pease Air National Guard Base.

New Hampshire Adjutant General David Mikolaities praised Pogorek as an exemplary leader and mentor. “Gen. Pogorek served his state and nation with the utmost professionalism and dedication. He will be deeply missed,” Mikolaities said.

Governor Chris Sununu also expressed his condolences, highlighting Pogorek’s dedication to his state and country. “Gen. Pogorek’s commitment and contributions to the Granite State will never be forgotten,” Sununu stated.

Pogorek is survived by his wife, Whitney, and their five children. The Rochester police continue to investigate the crash and urge anyone with information to contact them.