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Marine paralyzed after shot in training accident

A U.S. Marine with Echo Company, 2nd Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, fires a M27 infantry automatic rifle at simulated enemies during an Integrated Training Exercise (ITX) at Marine Corps Air-Ground Combat Center Twentynine Palms, Calif., Aug. 18, 2016. ITX is designed to bring together the ground, air, and logistics combat elements of the Marine Corps into one fully capable and lethal unit, ready to respond to global uncertainty. (Lance Cpl. Danny Gonzalez, 1st Marine Division Combat Camera/U.S. Marine Corps)
September 01, 2019

A Marine was seriously injured following an incident during a live-fire training exercise at the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center Twentynine Palms last month, new reports revealed.

The not-yet identified Marine lance corporal from the Massachusetts-based reserve unit, 1st Battalion, 25th Marines, was injured during an incident on July 28 that was disclosed this week in a Navy Safety Center report, according to reporting by Military.com on Friday.

The Marine was shot during a company level exercise as part of a predeployment training.

The Navy Safety Center report described the incident as a Class-A mishap; an incident resulting in “fatality or permanent total disability.”

Marine Corps press officer, 1st Lt. Cameron Edinburgh, provided some additional details in a statement

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Edinburgh said the Marine was “treated and stabilized” by a medical support team before being transported to Desert Regional Medical Center in Palm Springs, 50 miles from the base.

Edinburgh said the Marine was later transferred to another facility for specialized care.

“We recognize our training operations are inherently dangerous and we place safety at the forefront of every mission,” Edinburgh added. “We stand with the family of the injured Marine, and we are grateful to the medical professionals for their care and support to one of our own.”

No information is yet available as to the cause of the incident, whether the incident is seen as accidental, whether anyone is facing charges, if the injured marine was wearing any protective equipment or what safety protocols were in place during this training event.

The incident happened as 1st Battalion, 25th Marines was preparing for a deployment.

While training accidents are not all that uncommon, an accident resulting in a service member’s paralysis is rare.

One incident occurred in February 2015 when an 18-ton Stryker vehicle rolled off a 250-foot cliff during an exercise at Fort Carson’s training range 41, killing one soldier and paralyzing another, as reported by The Gazette.

Staff Sgt. Justin L. Holt was killed when he was ejected from the vehicle during the crash. Sgt. Tim Riney was left paralyzed. Four other soldiers were injured.

Army investigators later determined that a wrong turn led to the crash.