SAN DIEGO — An 18-year-old military recruit died after collapsing and becoming unresponsive during training at Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, authorities said Saturday.

On Sept. 27 around 9:20 p.m., Private First Class Javier F. Pong was taken to Naval Hospital Camp Pendleton, where he was pronounced dead, Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego stated in a news release.

“We are greatly saddened by the untimely passing of Pfc. Javier Pong as he
pursued his journey to become a United States Marine. All of us here at
MCRD San Diego mourn his loss, and extend our prayers and heartfelt
condolences to his family and friends during this difficult time,” said
Brig. Gen. Jason L. Morris, commanding general, Marine Corps Recruit Depot
San Diego. “We are committed to honoring his memory, supporting those with
whom he served, and investigating the cause of his death to ensure we can
safely transform civilians into Marines and retain the trust of the American

Military officials say an investigation is ongoing.