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One soldier dies and two injured during training exercise in Washington

A 20-year-old US soldier was killed and two others injured Monday during a training exercise at the Yakima Training Center in central Washington state, an Army spokesman said.

U.S. Army Private First Class (PFC) Junior Private Joseph A Marquez died following a “single vehicle incident,” according to the statement from the 7th Infantry Division at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington.

Marquez, who was from Dover, Delaware, was pronounced dead at the scene after the car crash during the exercise, the statement said without giving further details about the crash.

Two other soldiers, whose names have not been given, were “slightly injured” and were taken to Yakima Memorial Hospital. They were later released from the hospital.

“We are deeply saddened by the loss of Pfc. Marquez,” said Lt. Col. Michael Filanowski, his squadron commander. “Blackhawk Squadron sends its deepest condolences to his family and loved ones. Our prayers and our thoughts are with them during this difficult time.”

He had joined the military in 2021, according to his 2-2 Stryker Brigade Combat Team.

Members of his squad paid tribute to the soldier and said he was known for his laughter and was a loving son and loyal friend.

“PFC Marquez was known for his laughter and the light he spread wherever he went. We knew him as a loving son and brother to his family, a loyal friend to his comrades and a loyal soldier to his nation,” he posted on Facebook.

“Please respect the privacy of the family and the unit as we mourn the loss of one of our own.”

According to the US Army Combat Readiness Center, at least 20 soldiers died in accidents during in-service training exercises in 2021. Of these, 11 were among aviation accidents and the other nine were on the ground.

The cause of the crash is under investigation, officials said.

The Independent Gt

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