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Pregnant widow of Marine killed in Twentynine Palms: ‘It kills me every day.’

A 24-year-old Marine was killed during a training exercise at the Twentynine Palms base earlier this month.

Lance Cpl. Jonothan Barnette, 24, was struck in the chest by a live round during a dry fire training exercise on October 3, family told WTVC in Chattanooga, TN. Family added that Barnette was not wearing chest protective equipment at the time of the incident.

We have reached out to officials with the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center for more information on this incident.

This is a statement sent to the News Channel 3 newsroom on Thursday morning.

A Marine died after sustaining a small arms gunshot wound, Sunday October 3, 2021, while conducting training during Service Level Training Exercise (SLTE) 1-22.

Lance Corporal Jonothan F. Barnette, a rifleman with Kilo Company, 3d Battalion, 2d Marines, 2d Marine Division, was pronounced deceased by competent medical authority at approximately 6:30 p.m., Sunday, October 3rd as the result of a training incident while participating in (SLTE) 1-22 aboard the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center in Twentynine Palms, CA.

“All of us in the Betio family are devastated by the untimely death of Lance Corporal Jonothan Barnette,” said LtCol. Charles Nash, Commanding Officer, 3d Battalion, 2d Marines. “Lance Cpl. Barnette was an invaluable member of our team, and our deepest condolences go out to Jonothan’s family, friends, and loved ones. We extend our full support during this very difficult time.”

Barnette enlisted in the Marine Corps in 2018 and attended recruit training at MCRD Parris Island, S.C. in June 2019. Upon graduating from the School of Infantry – East in May 2020, Lance Cpl. Barnette was assigned to 3d Battalion, 2d Marines. His awards include the National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Navy Arctic Service Ribbon, and Sea Service Deployment Ribbon. Lance Cpl. Barnette is survived by his spouse, Savannah, mother, Robin, and father, Franklin.

Cause of the incident is under investigation and we are cooperating with appropriate authorities as they conduct their investigation. More information will be available when the investigation is complete. We ask that you respect the privacy of Lance Cpl. Barnette’s family during this difficult time.

1st Lt. Sydney E. Murkins
Engagements Officer, Communication & Strategy Operations

The Naval Safety Center's mishaps summary lists a deadly training incident that occurred in Twentynine Palms on Oct. 3.

"3 Oct 2021 (Twenty-Nine Palms, CA) SVM received gunshot wound to chest while conducting dry fire rehearsal training. Died at scene"

- Naval Safety Center Mishap Stats 10/06/21
Jonothan Barnette

Jonothan's wife, Savannah Barnette, is pregnant with their second child.

"He will not be here to watch our daughter grow up or to be here to experience is our baby being born. It kills me every day. Every day, it kills me," Savannah said.

Barnette was originally from Chatsworth, Georgia but lived in Jacksonville, North Carolina prior to his death, according to his obituary. The Marine Corps Times reports that Barnette enlisted in the Marines in 2018 and graduated from the School of Infantry — East in May of 2020.

At the time of his death, Barnette was part of the 3rd Battalion, 2nd Marines Kilo Company 3rd PLT as a 0311.

A GoFundMe page has been started to help support Barnette's family. Click here to visit that page.

He put his brothers above himself in every way. It’s time we do the same for him. We promised to not let his family suffer alone during these difficult times and want them to be financially supported so they can focus on their grief and not have any added hardships.

- Gofundme page set up by friends

The cause of the incident remains under investigation.

Stay with News Channel 3 for any updates.

Jesus Reyes

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