Body of missing Special Forces soldier found after parachute training accident

SHELTON, Wash. -- The body of a Special Forces soldier has been recovered, after he went missing during an airborne exercise Friday morning.

Search and rescue teams found the unidentified soldier near the Kamilche area of Mason County around 10 p.m. Friday.

The soldier, whose Special Forces unit is based at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, was part of a military parachuting exercise over a wooded area of Mason County Friday morning, Army Maj. Tim Chavez at JBLM said.

The missing soldier did not report in after the drop, and he was reported missing at about noon, Chavez said.

The Associated Press reported that the soldier was forced to deploy a reserve parachute during the training exercise.

Mason County sheriff's Chief Criminal Deputy Ryan Spurling said about 110 people helped search a 6-mile diameter circle in rough terrain and in timber. They had the help of infrared and night-vision goggles.

Military officials are withholding the soldier's identity until 24 hours after his family has been notified.

An investigation into the incident is underway.

“Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family, friends and loved ones of the Soldier involved in this tragic incident,” said Col. Otto K. Liller. “We will conduct a thorough investigation into this incident, and we will do everything in our power to support the family of the brave Soldier who died today.”