Marine who died during training has been identified as a newly promoted sergeant

Sgt. Colin Arslanbas (Facebook)

Mark Price
The Charlotte Observer

A Marine from the St. Louis area died participating in a military exercise in eastern North Carolina, and it happened less than three weeks after he made sergeant, according to the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit.

Details of how Sgt. Colin Arslanbas died have not been released.

It happened just after 11 p.m. Thursday, April 18, near Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, the unit reported in a news release.

“The incident occurred during a training exercise in Carteret County,” the unit said. “The incident is under investigation.”

Carteret County is about a 170-mile drive southeast of Raleigh, along the coast.

Arslanbas served as a Reconnaissance Marine with the Maritime Special Purpose Force, and was stationed at Camp Lejeune, officials said. The Maritime Special Purpose Force participated in an amphibious task force exercise aboard the USS New York just days before the incident, according to an April 13 social media post.

Sgt. Colin Arslanbas (Facebook)

Facebook page for Arslanbas reports he attended Fort Zumwalt West High School in O’Fallon, Missouri, before enlisting in the Marine Corps on March 16, 2020. O’Fallon is just northwest of St. Louis.

Arslanbas was prompted to sergeant on April 1, officials said. He earned the Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal and National Defense Service Medal, officials said. He was 23, WNCN reports.

“The 24th MEU family mourns the loss of an outstanding Marine and leader,” 24th MEU commanding officer Col. Todd Mahar said in a release. “Words cannot convey our sorrow for this tragic loss.”

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