Seven Marines were killed and several injured late Monday during a training exercise at Hawthorne Army Depot in Nevada, according to Marine officials.
The 230-square-mile facility, located about 140 miles southeast of Reno, stores ammunition that is awaiting demilitarization, but is also used for desert training.
The Marines were killed when a 60-millimeter mortar exploded in a tube as they were preparing to fire it.
“We send our prayers and condolences to the families of Marines involved in this tragic incident. We remain focused on ensuring that they are supported through this difficult time,” said Maj. Gen. Raymond C. Fox, II MEF commanding general. “We mourn their loss, and it is with heavy hearts we remember their courage and sacrifice.”