Marydel man struck and killed following crash on U.S. 1

MIDDLETOWN – Esteban Pantoja-Gordillo, a 34-year-old man from Marydel, Maryland, was struck and killed by a car early Sunday morning while he was walking southbound on U.S. 1 just north of Fieldsboro after being involved in a separate crash just moments before, according to Delaware State Police Spokesman Master Cpl. Michael Austin.

An initial investigation determined that a 2012 Nissan Altima, driven by Mr. Pantoja-Gordillo, was traveling southbound on Del. 1, south of Middletown, when for an unknown reason the car left the east side of the roadway and struck a guardrail in the center median at around 1:13 a.m.

After striking the guardrail, the Nissan continued on to the right shoulder of southbound Del. 1, where it became disabled.

Master Cpl. Austin said that Mr. Pantoja-Gordillo exited his vehicle and began walking southbound on Del. 1 in the right travel lane, just south of Mile Marker 82, when he was struck by a 2018 Nissan Altima being driven by a 41-year-old Smyrna woman.

Upon impact, Mr. Pantoja-Gordillo was thrown into the Del. 1 southbound left lane of travel where he came to rest. The Altima came to a controlled stop and remained at the scene.

Mr. Pantoja-Gordillo, who was wearing all dark, non-reflective clothing and not carrying a light, was pronounced dead at the scene. Impairment on his behalf is currently undetermined.

The woman driving the Nissan, as well as three juvenile passengers in her car, were all properly restrained and were not injured. Impairment is not deemed to be a contributing factor on her behalf.

Southbound Del. 1 was closed for around three hours while the scene was investigated and cleared.

Anyone with information regarding the incident is asked to contact Cpl. J. Breen of the Troop 2 Collision Reconstruction Unit in Newark by calling 302-365-8486. Information may also be provided by calling Delaware crime stoppers at 1-800-TIP-3333 or via the internet at