Marines under scrutiny for deaths at Parris Island

 In Military

Within a week, there was one death and one serious injury in separate incidents with recruits at Parris Island. Lawmakers are pressing for answers.

“I want the facts on Friday’s tragedy, but the loss of a second recruit raises serious questions. I am committed to getting to the root of this issue. The men and women who sign up to serve our country should not be dying in boot camp, and this third incident within eight months must be investigated thoroughly and expeditiously.” Rep. Debbie Dingell (D-MI)

Zachary R. Boland, 18, was found unresponsive on his bed on November 4 at around 8 p.m. An hour and a half later, he was pronounced dead at Beaufort Memorial Hospital. He had been assigned to 2nd Recruit Training Battalion.

“The command has directed an investigation regarding this incident per standard operating procedures. The investigation is ongoing.” Capt. Gregory Carroll

His death comes after another recruit, Kristian Gashaj, from Sterling Heights, Michigan, fell from the second floor of a Parris Island building on October 29. Officials believe it was a suicide attempt. He is on life-support with only a 5% chance of survival.

The circumstances and causes surrounding both cases are unknown at this time.

The Marine Corps investigated the death of Raheel Siddiqui, 20, in March, who jumped from the 3rd story of a Parris Island Building. Officials said it was suicide, but raised the specter of hazing.

He was reportedly so upset at being abused and slapped by his drill instructor that he took his own life. Twenty drill instructors, officers, and senior leaders others may ultimately face various charges from that incident.

Marine investigators thought that the issues that caused Siddiqui to commit suicide were limited to the 3rd Recruit Training Battalion.

But two serious incidents within a week have brought major scrutiny to the Marine Corps.

 

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