A future Marine recruit died Friday after completing the run portion of the Corps’ initial strength test held in Frederick, Maryland, according to Marine Corps officials.

The Marine Corps identified the poolee as 18-year-old Jose Rodriguez. He had just joined the Delayed Entry Program on March 25 and was slated to attend boot camp at the Parris Island, South Carolina, recruit depot in September, according to 1st Lt. William H. Tunney, a spokesman with the Corps’ 4th Marine Corps Recruiting District.

The Marine Corps provided no other details regarding Rodriguez’s death.

“We are deeply saddened by the loss of Jose Rodriguez, a young man who recently enlisted in the Delayed Entry Program," Tunney said. “We respect the Rodriguez family’s right to privacy and their decision whether to release further information regarding the incident."

The initial strength test is a modified version of the Corps’ physical fitness test and includes pullups, crunches and a 1.5 mile run. Male Marine poolees are expected to complete the run in 13 minutes and 30 seconds or faster.

The Delayed Entry Program helps prepare future Marine recruits for boot camp, and poolees can spend six months to nearly a year in the DEP before shipping to recruit training.

Rodriguez enlisted out of the Marine recruiting sub station Rockville, Maryland, Tunney said.

“Our Marines send heartfelt condolences to his family and friends while the circumstances surrounding his death are investigated,” Tunney said.

Shawn Snow is the senior reporter for Marine Corps Times and a Marine Corps veteran.

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