Camp Shelby training mission injures 22 paratroopers

Camp Shelby training mission injures 22 paratroopers

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Nearly two dozen Army paratroopers were injured Wednesday when winds pushed them off course and into a stand of pine trees.

The 22 paratroopers were on a nighttime training mission at Camp Shelby near Hattiesburg when they jumped from a C-130 transport plane around 8:30 p.m. with 67 others. The soldiers are with the 4th Brigade of the 25th Infantry Division stationed at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson in Anchorage, Alaska.

Camp Shelby commander Col. Bobby Ginn told WDAM that some of the parachutes became entangled in the trees, and the soldiers had to be rescued. Some were injured when they dropped from the trees in the dark. One soldier estimated he dropped some 20 or 30 feet.

The injured were transported to the Forest General Hospital. Dr. Duncan Donald, trauma medical director for FGH, told WDAM that the injuries include some significant fractures and back pain, but none are life threatening. Donald expects them to make a full recovery and be back on duty within three months.

Approximately 650 soldiers took part in last night’s training mission, which was the start of a 10-day exercise. Some 3,000 troopers from Alaska are taking part in “Operation Arctic Anvil” at Camp Shelby during the month of October.