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Training accident kills Navy SEAL at Fort Knox

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By Kelly Cantrall

A U.S. Navy SEAL was killed during a training accident this week at Fort Knox. Seven other service members were injured.

Special Warfare Operator 3rd Class Jonathan H. Kaloust, 23, died Wednesday when the Humvee he was in overturned during a training exercise, according to a news release from the Naval Special Warfare Group Two.

Seven others received minor injuries in the accident, according to the news release.

Capt. Robert Smith, commander of the Naval Special Warfare Group Two, stated in the release that an investigation into the accident has begun.

“The Naval Special Warfare community is deeply saddened by this tragic accident,” Smith said. “Our thoughts and our prayers go out to the family and friends of our fallen teammate and those injured in the accident.”

Kaloust, who joined the Navy in March 2011, was part of a SEAL team stationed at Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek — Fort Story in Virginia, according to information from the Naval Special Warfare Group Two.

Kaloust was from Massapequa, N.Y. He’s survived by his parents, Gary and Irene Kaloust, and a sister, Melanie.

The Navy has used the 170-square-mile Fort Knox as a training ground since World War II. The Army post is about 50 miles southwest of Louisville and is home to about 14,000 military personnel, including active duty members and reserves.

The post has been used by the Navy since World War II for various training exercises, including the testing of ship mock-ups before the actual vessels were used in combat.

The Navy had five units and about 247 sailors involved in external training support at the post in 2011.

“We go out there on a regular basis,” said Lt. David Lloyd, a spokesman for the Naval Special Warfare Group Two in Virginia Beach, Va..

The Salt River runs through the Army post. According to the Federal Register, the Corps of Engineers considers sections of the Salt River that fall within Fort Knox to be danger zones.

The river is used almost year-round for training and live-fire exercises involving artillery, tanks, helicopters and other weapons. Public access to the area is barred because there may be unexploded ordnance from military weapons.

According to the Navy News Service, the Navy also uses the Salt River, a major Ohio River tributary, to shoot recruiting videos.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.