In Brief: U.S. soldier dies during training exercise in California
FORT IRWIN, Calif. — A soldier has died during a training exercise in Southern California.
The U.S. Army reported Sunday that Pfc. Andrew Sass was killed at the National Training Center at Fort Irwin, about 150 miles east of Bakersfield. Lt. Col Joe Sowers says Sass died Saturday and has declined to disclose details, saying the incident was still under investigation.
The 23-year-old soldier was from Fremont, North Carolina, and assigned to Company C, 2nd Battalion, 1st Infantry Regiment at Joint Base Lewis-McChord near Seattle. Sass was on a monthlong training mission at Fort Irwin.
Sass enlisted in May 2013 and had not served overseas.
Coast Guard rescues five rowers
SAN FRANCISCO — A U.S. Coast Guard helicopter on Sunday plucked from the Pacific Ocean a rower who was participating in a race from California to Hawaii, the second time in a 24-hour period that authorities were called to help during the inaugural 2,400-mile competition.
A solo rower was hoisted from his boat to a helicopter at about 2 a.m. PDT after capsizing several times in rough seas about 50 miles west of Morro Bay, California, the Coast Guard said.
Organizers identified the rower as Jim Bauer, who the federal agency said was in stable condition.
“A lot of planning was involved in this particular rescue, due to low visibility and challenging weather conditions,” said Lt. Cmdr. Blake McKinney, a Coast Guard pilot involved in Bauer’s rescue.
The Coast Guard also conducted a rescue on Saturday morning. A crew of four rowers reported their boat was taking on water about 75 miles west of San Luis Obispo, California. Conditions were too rough for a sailboat serving as the race organizers’ rescue vessel to pick up the rowers.
The Coast Guard responded, and a rescue swimmer was lowered from a helicopter to the rowboat.
None of the rowers required hospitalization.
Race organizers say just seven of the 13 entrants remain in the Great Pacific Race, including a single solo rower.