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Mayor of Suburban Philadelphia Town Dies in Freak Skydiving Accident


He loved to skydive, but this time his parachute failed to open.

The mayor of a suburban Philadelphia town has been killed in a skydiving accident in southern New Jersey.

The Gloucester County Prosecutor's Office says 45-year-old Carter Scott Shields was killed when his main parachute failed to open and his emergency chute did not fully deploy. Shields was an attorney and mayor of the borough of Rutledge, Pa., about 10 miles west of Philadelphia.

Prosecutor's spokesman Bernie Weisenfeld says Shields landed in a wooded area near Cross Keys Airport in Monroe Township.

According to Philly.com:

Shields listed himself as single on his Facebook page, which had numerous photos of him skydiving.

His biography on his law firm website said he had three daughters. He was serving his second term as mayor of Rutledge, which has fewer than 800 residents, according to the 2010 Census.

Shields graduated from Haverford High School in 1983. He earned his law degree from Widener University in 1993.

On Friday night, his Facebook page was filled with stunned comments from family and friends, many repeating a reference to his love of skydiving: "Blue skies."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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