Coast Guard recruit, 19, dies after collapsing during fitness test in Cape May
The Coast Guard is investigating the death of a 19-year-old recruit who collapsed Friday during his initial physical fitness evaluation and died a few days later.
According to a statement from the Coast Guard, Seaman Recruit Aaron Redd, 21, from Stafford, Va., had just completed a 1.5-mile run as part of his fitness assessment when he collapsed at the Coast Guard Training Center in Cape May.
Coast Guard officials say medical personnel were already on the scene as part of the training center's safety protocol. Redd was immediately given first aid and transported to to Cape Regional Medical Center in Cape May Court House where he died Wednesday afternoon. The Coast Guard said the exact cause of the recruit's death has not yet been determined.
Redd enlisted in the Coast Guard on June 28 and was a member of Recruit Company Delta-193, officials said.
“Seaman Recruit Redd was only a member of the Coast Guard family for a few days, but we are deeply saddened by his tragic loss. Our thoughts are with his family during this difficult time,” said Capt. Owen Gibbons, commanding officer of Training Center Cape May.
Prior to enlisting, officials say recruits for the Coast Guard as well as all armed services, are required to undergo medical evaluations. The Coast Guard also conducts additional medical screenings when newly enlisted members arrive at the Cape May Training Center.
Following the medical tests, recruits undergo a physical fitness assessment "to determine a recruit’s ability to safely endure the rigors of basic training," the Coast Guard said.
At the Cape May Center, the results of the fitness tests are used to help recruits improve their fitness levels and avoid injury throughout their training, officials said.
Toniann Antonelli is a social content producer for NJ 101.5. She can be reached at email@example.com, or on Twitter @ToniRadio1015.