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Marine Corps identifies 7 killed in Nevada training accident

March 20, 2013|By David Zucchino
  • Lance Cpl. David P. Fenn II, 20, of Polk City, Fla. in undated photo.
Lance Cpl. David P. Fenn II, 20, of Polk City, Fla. in undated photo. (Marine Corps )

The Marine Corps released the identities Wednesday night of the seven Marines who died this week when a mortar shell exploded during a live-fire training exercise at Hawthorne Army Depot in Nevada. 

Those killed were Pfc. Joshua M. Martino, 19, of Clearfield, Pa.; Lance Cpl. David P. Fenn II, 20, of Polk City, Fla.; Lance Cpl. Roger W. Muchnick Jr., 23, of Fairfield, Conn.; Lance Cpl. Joshua C. Taylor, 21, of Marietta, Ohio; Lance Cpl. Mason J. Vanderwork, 21, of Hickory, N.C.; Lance Cpl. William T. Wild IV, 21, of Anne Arundel, Md.; and Cpl. Aaron J. Ripperda, 26, of Madison, Ill.

The Marines did not identify the eight  injured -- seven Marines and a Navy corpsman. All the victims were members of 1st Battalion, 9th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force, based at Camp Lejeune, N.C.

In a statement, the Marines said the Navy corpsman is very seriously injured, five Marines are seriously injured, and two Marines have been treated for minor injuries and released.

In a statement, the unit’s commanding officer, Lt. Col. Andrew J. McNulty, said the 60-millimeter mortar system “failed to function as designed.’’

McNulty praised the efforts of Marines and sailors who provided first aid immediately after the mortar round exploded Monday, calling it “nothing short of heroic.’’

“There were numerous acts of selflessness as our injured cared for each other and directed corpsmen to care for more severely injured before being treated themselves,’’ McNulty said.

david.zucchino@latimes.com

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