FORT JACKSON, S.C. — A Maine Army National Guard recruit died Sunday in a South Carolina hospital from medical complications brought on by a brief illness suffered while he was in basic training at Fort Jackson.

Pvt. Jordan Chase, 19, a recent graduate of Gray-New Gloucester High School who was born in Lewiston, died at 4:35 a.m. Sunday, according to a press release issued by Gov. Paul LePage’s office. The governor’s office reported that Chase died “from complications connected to a medical emergency.”

News outlets in Columbia, S.C., reported Sunday evening that a 19-year-old Fort Jackson recruit died of pneumonia. Dan Demeritt, spokesman for LePage, was unable to confirm Chase’s cause of death.

“Ann and I join all of Maine in extending our deepest condolences to the family of Private Jordan Chase of the Maine Army National Guard,” LePage said in a statement. “Private Chase was in training to serve and defend us all, and we are saddened by his untimely passing.”

U.S. Sen. Olympia Snowe also released a statement Sunday expressing her thoughts and prayers for the Chase family.

“Indeed, he answered our country’s most honorable call by joining the Maine Army National Guard and we all owe him a debt of immeasurable gratitude that we can never repay, and must never forget — and we will not forget,” Snowe said in a statement.

Columbia, S.C.-based newspaper The State reported that the 19-year-old Fort Jackson soldier was initially admitted to the base’s Moncrief Army Community Hospital Feb. 12, but was moved two days later to Providence Hospital in Columbia. He was then moved to Palmetto Richland Hospital for a more advanced level of care, but remained in serious condition throughout the week.

The State reported that the soldier’s family was with him when he died.


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