Wednesday, March 20, 2013
Military officials believe the accident took place when a 60mm mortar round exploded in an artillery tube. The Pentagon has since suspended the use of 60mm mortar rounds until an investigation into the accident is completed, according to the Associated Press.
The fallen Marines were with the 2nd Marine Division based at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina. A news release from the II Marine Expeditionary Force reports eight members of the 2nd Marine Division were also injured in the explosion, including a Navy Corpsman:
The eighth injured Marine reported his injuries the following day on March 19. Currently, the sailor is considered very seriously injured; five others are seriously injured and two Marines have been treated for minor injuries and released back to the unit.
Marine Corps officials will announce the identities of those killed tonight at 9:45 p.m. East Coast time.