Navy SEAL Candidate Dies After Completing 'Hell Week' Training

Navy SEAL candidate Kyle Mullen, 24, of Manalapan, New Jersey, died in San Diego on Friday after completing the final training phase, known as Hell Week.

Navy SEAL candidates during a training program in 2010

Photo by Charles Ommanney/Getty Images

Navy SEAL candidates during a training program in 2010

A Navy SEAL candidate died in San Diego on Friday after completing the final training phase, known as Hell Week.

ABC News reports Kyle Mullen, a 24-year-old from Manalapan, New Jersey, who was assigned to Naval Special Warfare Basic Training Command, was taken to the hospital along with a second candidate who remains in stable condition at Naval Medical Center San Diego.

The two SEAL candidates were rushed to the hospital “several hours after their Basic Underwater Demolition SEAL (BUD/S) class successfully completed Hell Week, part of the first phase of the Navy SEAL assessment and selection pathway,” the Navy said in a statement.

As described by, “Hell Week” involves “basic underwater demolition, survival and other combat tactics. It comes in the fourth week as SEAL candidates are being assessed.” 

The cause of Mullen’s death is currently unknown and is under investigation.

“We extend our deepest sympathies to Seaman Mullen’s family for their loss,” Rear Adm. H.W. Howard III, commander of Naval Special Warfare Command, said in a Navy news release on Sunday. “We are extending every form of support we can to the Mullen family and Kyle’s BUD/S classmates.”

Meanwhile, Paul Anderson, a retired Navy SEAL chief, shared more details about Hell Week in a statement to Fox 5 San Diego.

“It is a miserable time, it is well-named,” he said. “It’s a gut check. You get approximately four hours of sleep the whole week. You are constantly doing physical evolutions whether it’s physical obstacles, going in and out of the surf zone with your boats, running, you are constantly wet and you are always sandy.”

Anderson added, “They may have had pneumonia and went home to try and cover it up because if you are sick or injured you can be held back from your class. I think they didn’t want to lose their place and have to go through all this again so they may have tried to hide their symptoms, though again I don’t know.”

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