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Another Marine Recruit Hospitalized After Fall From Building

Drill instructors present their new Marines with Eagle, Globe and Anchors during the emblem ceremony Sept. 7, 2013, at the Iwo Jima flag raising statue on Parris Island, S.C. (Photo by Lance Cpl. MaryAnn Hill)
Drill instructors present their new Marines with Eagle, Globe and Anchors during the emblem ceremony Sept. 7, 2013, at the Iwo Jima flag raising statue on Parris Island, S.C. (Photo by Lance Cpl. MaryAnn Hill)

The Marine Corps is investigating after a third recruit in a little over a year was injured Wednesday in a fall from a building at Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island, South Carolina.

A recruit assigned to Support Battalion at Parris Island's Recruit Training Regiment fell from the roof of a one-story building and was transported to an off-site medical facility, said Capt. Adam Flores, a spokesman for the depot.

The recruit had arrived at Parris Island just the day before and was undergoing initial processing requirements when the incident occurred. Recruits are assigned to Support Battalion prior to beginning training at one of the depot's four recruit training battalions.

A source with knowledge of the incident said the recruit appeared to have jumped. The source added that the recruit was airlifted to a medical facility in Savannah, Georgia, though the medical status of the recruit is unclear.

"The command has directed an investigation regarding this incident per standard operating procedures," Flores said in a statement. "The command is currently focused on the recruit's health and is in close coordination with the family."

This is the third time a recruit has been injured in a fall from a Parris Island building since spring 2016. In October 2016, another recruit assigned to Support Battalion, 19-year-old Kristian Gashaj, reportedly jumped from a balcony only four days after arriving at Parris Island. As of June, Gashaj remained in a coma, at a long-term care facility in Michigan, according to reports from Marine Corps Times.

An investigation obtained by the publication indicates Gashaj was displaying strange behaviors and talking to himself prior to jumping from the second story of a building at the depot.

The first and most high-profile of the incidents took place in March 2016 when 20-year-old Raheel Siddiqui, a recruit assigned to Third Recruit Training Battalion, leapt to his death from the third story of a barracks building after being made to run back and forth by a drill instructor.

An investigation into that tragic incident uncovered a range of allegations regarding hazing at Parris Island, including an incident in which another Muslim recruit was allegedly thrown into an industrial dryer and interrogated.

Those allegations ultimately led to criminal charges for a number of drill instructors. Siddiqui's senior drill instructor, Gunnery Sgt. Joseph Felix, is set to face trial on charges of cruelty and maltreatment and drunk and disorderly conduct this fall.

Siddiqui's family maintains his death was not a suicide.

-- Editor's Note: The first graph has been corrected to show this is the third incident in a little more than a year.

-- Hope Hodge Seck can be reached at hope.seck@military.com. Follow her on Twitter at @HopeSeck.

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