Saturday, July 2, 2005

Soldier dies after training

Training collapse claims soldier
By Joe Whetham
The Forum

A Pelican Rapids, Minnesota, soldier three weeks into basic training collapsed and died Thursday at an Army base in Georgia.

Tyler Wahl, 18, collapsed outside a dining facility at Fort Benning, one the largest infantry training centers in the United States 100 miles south of Atlanta, said Monica Manganaro, the base's public affairs officer.

Wahl, a private second class with the 1st Battalion, 19th Infantry Regiment, collapsed about 4:30 p.m. and was taken to the base's hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 5:50 p.m, Manganaro said.

The cause of death is unknown and an autopsy will be performed, Manganaro said.

Wahl lived with his father, Delane Wahl, and older brother in Pelican Rapids before leaving for basic training June 8.

Wahl graduated from Pelican Rapids High School in May and has three sisters and one other brother who don't live with Delane Wahl. Delane Wahl declined to speak about his son before the Army returns his body from Fort Benning.

Manganaro said Wahl was taking outdoor navigation and community classes during basic training. She said soldiers are given a week before starting intensive training.

Wahl's training in classes didn't involve sprinting, Manganaro said, but rather searching for people in a woods environment.

Temperatures reached 90 degrees Thursday at Fort Benning, according to reports from In the three weeks Wahl was in basic training, temperatures reached 90 degrees or higher 10 times.

Funeral arrangements are pending with Larson Funeral Home of Pelican Rapids.

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