The Navy SEAL who perished in a training accident in Arizona this week has been identified as Special Warfare Operator Chief Brett D. Shadle, according to an announcement Saturday by US military officials.
Shadle was reportedly killed when he suffered a mid-air collision with a fellow SEAL while participating in parachute training on Thursday. The second SEAL was injured and remains hospitalized in stable condition, according to Navy officials. His identity remains unknown at this time.
As previously reported in The Inquisitr, the accident occurred around 12:30 pm Thursday, during a military free-fall exercise.
Because parachutes are commonly used during hostage rescue or anti-terrorist operations, SEALs reportedly receive a significant amount of training preparation.
The Department of Defense confirmed that both victims were transported to the University of Arizona Medical Center, where 31-year-old Brett Shadle was pronounced dead.
According to the Shadle family, the decorated Navy SEAL leaves behind a wife and two young children. A native of Pennsylvania, Shadle was reportedly stationed at a Naval Special Warfare unit in Virginia.
News of the Navy SEAL's accidental death in Arizona sent sorrow and disbelief through his family. Surviving missions in both Iraq and Afghanistan during his career, Shadle's death in a training exercise was a shocking blow.
"He was always a good kid," expressed the late SEAL's uncle, Donald Shadle, following the accident in Arizona. "... he always wanted to be a Navy SEAL and that's what he did."
Brett Shadle reportedly achieved his lifelong aspiration of being a Navy Seal was just one year after his enlistment in 2000. He later became a decorated member of the elite SEAL Team 6.
Two years ago in Pakistan, individuals from SEAL Team 6 were tasked with carrying out the raid that resulted in the death of terrorist Osama bin Laden.
While many details surrounding Shadle's military career are classified, the Navy confirmed that he was a highly decorated member of the SEALs. He reportedly earned several service ribbons and Bronze Star Medals with Valor as part of the elite military special forces unit.
Military officials are currently investigating the circumstances that led to the Navy SEAL's tragic death during a routine training exercise in Arizona.
[Top image via Shutterstock]