Military

Investigation Underway After National Guard Member Stationed in DC Dies

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A National Guard soldier from New York state died Thursday in Washington, D.C., where he had been deployed since January after the Capitol incursion.

Specialist Justin Grennell, 26, of the Syracuse suburb of Marcellus was found unresponsive Thursday morning in his hotel room, according to Syracuse.com. He was pronounced dead by first responders.

“Joint Task Force District of Columbia is sad to confirm the death of a National Guard member serving with the U.S. Capitol security mission due to an apparent medical emergency,” Guard spokesman Lt. Col. Robert Carver said in a statement, according to Military.com. “The individual was not on duty at the time, and the incident is under investigation.”

Grennell’s death was under investigation by the Washington, D.C., Metropolitan Police Department, Eric Durr, a spokesman for the New York National Guard, told Syracuse.com.

Grennell was a member of Troop A of the 2nd Squadron, 101st Cavalry. He was part of a contingent of 540 New York troops who went to Washington in January.

At the height of the deployment, 26,000 troops were in Washington to protect the inauguration of President Joe Biden, although no threats ever materialized. The size of the Guard force in Washington has since shrunk to about 4,300 troops, CNN reported.

Although the deployment had been scheduled to end this month, the Pentagon has approved a request from the Capitol Police to keep 2,300 Guard troops in Washington for an additional two months.

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