Army Reserve general dies after collapsing during physical fitness training

FORT BRAGG, North Carolina (WTVD) -- An Army Reserve major general died Friday at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, officials announced Saturday.

The ArmyTimes reports, Maj. Gen. Francisco Espaillat, 56, collapsed Friday during individual physical training and was rushed by ambulance to Womack Army Medical Center, where medical staff pronounced him dead, according to a news release.

Espaillat had recently been selected to serve as the chief of staff for U.S. Army Reserve Command.

"Just last month I had the privilege of promoting him in a low-key ceremony at my office in Washington, D.C.," said Lt. Gen. Charles Luckey, the Army Reserve chief and commanding general of U.S. Army Reserve Command, in a statement. "This was just his style, as a soldier he was humble, never seeking recognition. He was a splendid soldier who embodied leadership, energy and a relentless spirit of execution in everything he did... Our hearts and prayers are with his family during this time of shock and grief," he said.

General Luckey spoke exclusively to ABC11 on the balcony of the U.S Army Reserve Command Headquarters where he and General Espaillat spent a lot of time talking, but it wasn't always about call of duty.

"Family, it was family," Luckey said. "We do this for our family. We do this for our nation. When I talk about a servant leader I'm talking about selfless contribution, looking out for and taking care of people other than yourself."

Espaillat leaves behind a wife and four children, one who's an active duty service member.

The Army is investigating the cause of Espaillat's death.
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