Marine Recruit Dies During 'The Crucible' Training (Michael Sohn/AP)
By Brian Freeman | Wednesday, 09 June 2021 01:09 PM
U.S. Marine recruit Dalton Beals died during "The Crucible" training with the new Marines of Echo Company on Friday in Parris Island, South Carolina, the Marine Corps Recruit Depot Facebook post has announced.
"Our deepest condolences go out to Dalton's family and to the Marines and staff of Echo Company," Marine Corps Recruit Depot said in a statement. "The cause of death is currently under investigation."
Beals, who had been scheduled to graduate June 18, was described in a GoFundMe to benefit his mother as a "wonderful Marine who left us far too soon."
His mother called her son "the most sincere, kindhearted, sweet, and amazing young man.'"
Pennsville Memorial High School in New Jersey, where Beals graduated last year, mourned his loss on Facebook, posting:
"The flags at the Pennsville High School Memorial and Stadium Complex will be flown at half staff in honor of the memory and service of PMHS 2020 Graduate and United States Marine Dalton Beals. As Pennsville High School is a Memorial School, his sacrifice to his country will forever be memorialized along with those who have gone before him, George Callan (Class of 62), and William Keeler (Class of 66)."
"Dalton was a kid everyone liked," Pennsville football coach Mike Healy told NJ.com. "Coaching him was one of the biggest pleasures I had. He would do anything you asked him to do. He was invincible, never got hurt, he was able to fight through everything."
Healy said Beals was also a mentor for underclassmen.
"As a senior, he always helped out the younger kids, so everyone had a good relationship with him," Healy continued. "He meant a lot to a lot of people – a lot of these kids were still very close to him. For the parents and the family it's the worst, but the community is definitely feeling it as well."
In addition to football, Dalton was also on the wrestling and track teams in high school.
Gov. Phil Murphy ordered U.S. and New Jersey flags to be flown at half-staff at all state buildings and facilities Wednesday.
"The Crucible" is a 54-hour training exercise that tests the physical and mental strengths of a Marine recruit, according to WKYC.
It includes a 9-mile hike from the training grounds to the Iwo Jima statue. During the exercise, recruits are permitted only a limited amount of food and sleep.
Upon completion of the exercise, recruits receive their Eagle, Globe, and Anchors.