A Navy SEAL candidate who died during “Hell Week” training over the weekend was identified Sunday as 24-year-old Kyle Mullen of Manalapan, NJ.
Mullen died during an underwater demolition class near San Diego, Calif., on Friday. Another candidate for the elite military squad was hospitalized during the training exercise, according to a report by USA Today.
“Great athlete but a better person,” said Ed Guerreri, the football coach at Manalapan High School where Mullen played, to the outlet.
“Everybody loved him,” Guerreri said. “Probably one of the best kids I ever had. Great, great kid on the field but even better off the field.”
The coach said his players will now wear a No. 44 patch — Mullen’s old number — on their uniforms at the Monmouth County school.
Mullen went on to play at Yale University, where he was selected second-team All-Ivy League as a defensive lineman, and for Monmouth University, USA Today said.
Rear Admiral H.W. Howard, commander of the US Navy Special Warfare Command, offered his condolences to the young sailor’s family.
“We are extending every form of support we can to the Mullen family and Kyle’s classmates,” Howard said in a statement.
Navy SEALS, considered the elite unit of the military’s naval arm, requires candidates to make it through a rigorous 26-week training program before they can join.
The candidate injured during the training remained hospitalized in stable condition at the Naval Medical Center in San Diego, USA Today said.
The last SEAL candidate to die during training was Seaman James Derek Lovelace, 21, who drowned in 2016.
With Post Wires