On the same day, two instructors were fired from the Marine Corps West Coast Infantry School.

On the same day, two instructors were fired from the Marine Corps West Coast Infantry School.


On the same day, the Marine Corps dismissed two commanders of the West Coast Infantry School.

On March 8, Brigadier General Farrell Sullivan, commander of the Marine Corps Training Command, announced that he had fired both Col. Seth McCutcheon, commander of the Western Infantry School, and Maj. Nicholas Engle, commander of the school’s Reconnaissance Training Company. Maj. Joshua Pena, a training force spokesman, said in an emailed statement to the Marine Corps. Friday episode.

Pena said he was relieved that both commanders had “lost trust and confidence in their ability to carry out the responsibilities of their command.”

“TRNGCMD is committed to ensuring that leadership at all levels fulfills its responsibility to safely and efficiently deploy the best and brightest Marines to operational units,” Pena said in a statement. “No additional information available at this time.”

Military.com first reported the shooting.

McCutcheon declined to comment to Marine Corps Times. Marine Corps Times attempted to contact Mr. Engle, but did not receive a response by the time of publication.

Western Infantry School, located at Camp Pendleton, California, is where newly recruited Marines must go to learn infantry basics or more advanced infantry skills. The school is home to the Reconnaissance Training Company, which trains Reconnaissance Marines.

August 2023, Lance Corporal. Joseph Waley, 20, was fatally injured in what the Naval Safety Center calls a “negligent discharge” during a night live-fire training session as part of his school’s basic reconnaissance course. Days after Whaley’s death, the Marine Corps announced it was investigating what happened.

In July 2023, Mr. McCutcheon fired the school’s top noncommissioned officer leader, Sergeant John Johnson. Maj. Stephen Burkett called Pena a “loss of trust and confidence in his ability to perform his duties.”

According to his official biography, Mr. McCutcheon is an infantry officer who served in Kosovo, Iraq, the Republic of Georgia, and Israel. He serves as the commander of the 3rd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment. Officer of the 1st Marine Regiment. Chief of the Southeastern Europe and Middle East Programs Branch and Israel Secretary of the U.S. European Command’s Plans, Policy, Strategy, and Capabilities Directorate; Deputy Chief of Staff for Plans, Marine Corps Pacific;

He assumed command of the infantry school in June 2022.

McCutcheon’s personal awards include the Bronze Star Medal with a “V” symbol for valor and the Distinguished Service Medal, according to his biography.

Engle assumed command of Reconnaissance Training Squadron in May 2023, according to his LinkedIn page. His previous role was as an operations officer for the 1st Reconnaissance Battalion, part of the California-based 1st Marine Division.

Eileen Lowenson is a staff reporter at Marine Corps Times. She joined Military Times as an Editorial Fellow in her August 2022. She is a graduate of Williams College and served as editor-in-chief of the student newspaper.



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