HATTIESBURG (AP) — A member of the Mississippi National Guard died Thursday while participating in a physical fitness test, officials said.

Staff Sgt. Robert Jason Belue, 44, of Iuka, died after experiencing a medical emergency while conducting the Army Combat Fitness Test at the 154th Regiment, Regional Training Institute at Camp Shelby Joint Forces Training Center in Hattiesburg, the Guard said in a news release. He died while being taken by ambulance to Forrest General Hospital, officials said.

Belue was assigned to Charlie Troop, 1-98th Cavalry Regiment, 155th Armored Brigade Combat Team.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with his family, friends and fellow service members during this time of loss,” the Guard said.

During his 24 years of military service, Belue earned several awards and decorations including the Army Commendation Medal, Army Achievement Medal, Army Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal and the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal. He also served on two deployments in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2005 and Operation Enduring Freedom in 2009.

Staff Writer

Zack Steen was first hired in 1999 as a junior in high school to work in the Daily Corinthian design department. After several years away, he returned in 2014 as staff writer. He's married to the love of his life Brandy and they have 5 wonderful fur-kids.

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