MARSOC Identifies Marine Killed in MRZR Vehicle Accident

Staff Sgt. Joshua Braica, a 29-year-old critical skills operator with 1st Marine Raider Battalion, died on Sunday from injuries he sustained during a vehicle rollover during a training exercise in California. (U.S. Marine Corps)
Staff Sgt. Joshua Braica, a 29-year-old critical skills operator with 1st Marine Raider Battalion, died on Sunday from injuries he sustained during a vehicle rollover during a training exercise in California. (U.S. Marine Corps)

The Marine Corps has identified the Raider killed in a training accident in California over the weekend as Staff Sgt. Joshua Braica.

Braica, a 29-year-old critical skills operator with 1st Marine Raider Battalion, died on Sunday from injuries he suffered during a Saturday vehicle accident at Camp Pendleton, California. He is survived by his wife and son, according to a news release from Marine Corps Forces Special Operations Command.

"Our thoughts are with the family and teammates of Staff Sgt. Braica during this difficult time," his command said in a statement. "MARSOC is providing care and support to them and we urge respect for their privacy as they grieve this loss."

Braica and at least two other Raiders were riding in a Polaris MRZR, an ultralight all-terrain vehicle used by special operators, when it rolled during a training exercise. The staff sergeant was medically evacuated to Scripps Memorial Hospital in La Jolla, about 30 minutes south of the base, where he died the next day.

The two other Raiders in the vehicle suffered minor injuries. The incident remains under investigation, according to MARSOC officials.

Braica was originally from Sacramento, California. He joined the Marine Corps in 2010 and served with 1st Battalion, 4th Marines and Marine Aircraft Group 36 before joining MARSOC.

Braica had deployed as an intelligence specialist to the Asia-Pacific region with 13th Marine Expeditionary Unit. After completing MARSOC's rigorous training in 2015, he again deployed to the Pacific in 2017 with 1st Marine Raider Battalion.

His personal decorations include the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal with gold star in lieu of second award and two Good Conduct Medals.

Braica was a graduate of the Marine Corps Intelligence Training Center, Marksmanship Instructor Course, MARSOC's Individual Training Course, MARSOC's Basic Language Course, the Marine Special Operations Forces Technical Surveillance Course, the MARSOF Network Operators Course, the Basic Airborne Course and Military Freefall School.

-- Gina Harkins can be reached at gina.harkins@military.com. Follow her on Twitter @ginaaharkins.

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