From a May 30 story in the Charleston Post and Courier:
A sailor who worked at the Naval Weapons Station died Saturday morning, just hours after he was shot at a Berkeley County apartment.Comments in the next day's follow-on article, along with their ages, make it clear that the Sailors involved in the tragedy were students at the Navy Nuclear Power Training Command at the Naval Weapons Station in Goose Creek, SC. That article had this additional piece of information:
Branden Michael Pease, 20, was at a friend’s home in the Ladson area around 10:30 Friday night when the shooting occurred, according to the Berkeley County Sheriff’s Office.
Pease was taken to Trident Hospital, where he died around 3:15 a.m. Saturday.
Deputies on the scene arrested one of Pease’s co-workers, Darell William Sohm, 22. His address is listed at Ashley Town Center Drive.
Sohm, also a sailor assigned to the Weapons Station, has been charged with involuntary manslaughter. He is being held at the Hill-Finklea Detention Center while he waits for a bond hearing.
Rhoad said it appears "a bunch of people" were at the scene and that apparently "everybody was drinking" when the shot was fired. He said it's possible the gun discharged accidentally while being handled, but many questions remain unanswered.The comments for the last story consist of a lot of people providing anecdotal evidence that Navy "Nukes" are all wild and out of control, and others providing evidence that not all "Nukes" are dangerous idiots. I can't tell whether these are Nuke School or Prototype students; the party being on a Friday night suggests it could be either (since the end of Day Shift or T-Week occurs on a Friday for the NPTU students; if it was a Tuesday night, we could have safely assumed it was an "LDS" [Last Day of Swings] party by Prototypers). For anyone who knows: Are non-married students in either school allowed to live away from the barracks?
When I started Nuke School as an ET3 fresh out of "A" School in 1984, our Class Director told us that enlisted Nukes share two characteristics: We were smart, and we were lazy. The typical Nuke back in the 80s seemed to me to be a smart guy who had either run out of money for college, or had gotten distracted from going by girls and/or other fun things (I was the 2nd type). The group I hung out with (Section 14 geeks, for those of you who remember such things) generally partied pretty hard, getting drunk several nights a week. When I went to Prototype in Idaho, we drank during most days off and did stupid things involving playing football in the middle of the road. What I'm saying is that Nuke students drinking hard isn't anything new. While this tragedy will (rightly) cause significant restrictions to be put on the students in Charleston for quite a while, I'd say to people who claim that Navy Nukes are "out of control" that they really don't behave any differently than any other group of similarly-aged young people with similar amounts of time off and discretionary income. They're just held to a higher standard -- as well they should be, because of the responsibilities they'll have in a few months.
Update 1306 03 Jun: Both Sailors involved had MySpace pages; Pease's is here, Sohm's is here.