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Navy parachutist dies after crash during Fleet Week demonstrations

Parachute malfunction at Fleet Week

JERSEY CITY, N.J. -- - A Navy Seal team member has died when his parachute failed to open during a Fleet Week demonstration over the Hudson River. 

A Navy spokesman said the accident occurred shortly after noon Sunday near Liberty State Park.

The parachutist was a member of an elite Navy parachute team called the Leap Frogs.

In a release, the Navy said the parachutist was rescued immediately from the water by U.S. Coast Guard personnel who were standing by in vessels to support the aerial demonstration that featured a coordinated parachute jump. Local fire department personnel who were also on standby responded as well. The Navy said the parachutist was pronounced dead at Jersey City Medical Center at 1:10 p.m. 

The Navy said the identity of the victim would be released after family notifications were completed.

"Our hearts and prayers go out to his family, and I ask for all of your prayers for the Navy SEAL community who lost a true patriot today," said Rear Adm. Jack Scorby, commander of the Navy Region Mid-Atlantic. 

The cause of the parachute malfunction is under investigation.

Spectators were left shaken and praying for the victim's family, CBS New York reports

"Considering I have a son in the military, you going for some that you know, somebody's got to report that back to their family, and it's horrible," said spectator Juan Marin.

Naval officials are currently investigating what caused the parachutist's gear to malfunction.

Divers were in the water looking for evidence Sunday night, but called off their search after it got dark.

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