- The Enterprise
- The Recorder
A young man from Ohio who died this week in a motorcycle crash in St. Mary's, during a training class at a local raceway, had just recently begun riding, according to one of his brothers, after years of working on restoring older bikes.
Aaron Slemker, a 21-year-old Dayton area resident, died at the scene of Tuesday's midday crash at Maryland International Raceway in Budds Creek, where the 2012 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-14R went out of control and struck a cement barrier, according to the St. Mary's sheriff's office. Slemker was participating in a racing class on the access road behind the raceway's drag strip, the sheriff's office reports, and after completing a warm-up lap, he was returning to a staging area, at a high speed, and lost control of the motorcycle. Mechanicsville volunteer firefighters posted a photograph of the remains of the motorcycle lying next to a chain-link fence.
“He didn't have a lot of seat time. He was just training,” Samuel Slemker said Wednesday from the family's home in Ohio. “He had never been on anything like [that motorcycle] before.”
Aaron Slemker began buying older motorcycles as a teenager and fixing them, and he also started making carbon fiber parts for them, his brother said, before completing high school and moving on to employment as a prototype composite technician, for the ATK corporation and at his family's motorsports business.
“He had been working on [motorcycles] for a while, and I guess he got the idea that he wanted to learn how to ride,” Samuel Slemker said, noting that he and another brother, Luke, already were racing.
Aaron Slemker came to St. Mary's for the rookie class being conducted by a school using the facilities at the raceway, where his two brothers had planned to arrive for a Bike Fest event this weekend.
MIR released a statement that the motorcycle racing school leasing its premises was accredited, and that the crash occurred during low-speed drills for the class, before any actual full runs by the participants.
Mechanicsville rescue volunteers, St. Mary's advanced life-support members, Charles County paramedics and a Maryland State Police helicopter crew also were dispatched to the scene. Sheriff's office accident reconstruction team members are continuing their investigation.