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Army trainee died from cottonmouth bites
AP via N&R ^ | 9/17/08 | AP

Posted on 09/17/2008 9:41:54 AM PDT by Rebelbase

FORT BRAGG (AP) — The Army says a Special Forces trainee found dead this summer during a land navigation exercise in North Carolina was bitten by a poisonous water moccasin, also known as a cottonmouth.

The military said Wednesday the autopsy of 20-year-old Pfc. Norman M. Murburg of Dade City, Fla., ruled out heat or dehydration as a cause of death. Murburg was bitten multiple times while training at the Hoffman training area near Fort Bragg's Camp Mackall.

Soldiers began searching for Murburg when he didn't return from the exercise. His body was found June 10. Authorities met with Murburg's family to explain the autopsy results.

Maj. Gen. Thomas Csrnko, who commands the U.S. Army John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center, said the death reinforces the dangerous training for Green Beret candidates.

TOPICS: Extended News; News/Current Events; US: North Carolina
KEYWORDS: fortbragg; soldier
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To: mbynack

Hmm ~ and how fast was that snake “chasing”?

41 posted on 09/17/2008 10:35:43 AM PDT by muawiyah
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To: Rebelbase

I thought you still had to be Spec 4 or higher just to attend Q course. Did that change?

42 posted on 09/17/2008 10:37:49 AM PDT by WOBBLY BOB (Conservatives are to McCain what Charlie Brown is to Lucy.)
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To: poobear

Please forgive my ignorance.
Can you tell me the type of water your friend got caught in?
For instance ,clear lake, murky lake, sort of swampy or what?
I am constantly in the water and would care to avoid these critters.
Sorry for the soldier heros death,
Prayers for him and his family.

43 posted on 09/17/2008 10:46:34 AM PDT by Joe Boucher (An enemy of Islam)
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To: Rebelbase

I’ve killed several of these over the past few years in my yard in Tampa. Usually a steel rake does the job. Last year, my dog killed one (almost, I finished it off). Not sure how he did it, but RikiTikiTavi comes to mind, only in the shape of a 95lb. Belgian Malinois.

44 posted on 09/17/2008 10:50:07 AM PDT by grayhog
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To: fso301

I believe the young man was in SF selection - which means he hadn’t entered training yet. Land nav is done at night and by themselves...he was probably far from any help.

My son has been through SF selection.

45 posted on 09/17/2008 10:58:57 AM PDT by repubmom (Proud Army Mom of two soldiers - Psalm 91)
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Yes - they take PFC soldiers into selection. They enter the army through MOS 18x - Ft. Benning basic, Airborne and then to Ft. Bragg for Selection prep and then Selection. The x in 18 is replaced by the MOS they select once they get through selection and other training they have to go through. Both of my sons entered the army with an 18x contract.

46 posted on 09/17/2008 11:02:13 AM PDT by repubmom (Proud Army Mom of two soldiers - Psalm 91)
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To: yarddog

“I remember back in the late 50’s or maybe 60’s an Army Ranger training at Eglin AFB was bitten by a coral snake.”

In basic at Ft.Polk the instruction for most snake bites, the Rattler, the Cottonmouth, and the Copperhead was to summon a drill Sargent immediately in an effort to save our life, they also instructed us that if we were bit by a Coral snake, to just sit down, light a cigarette and die.

47 posted on 09/17/2008 11:05:13 AM PDT by ansel12 (There will be more than one "October surprise" this time. Count on it.)
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To: Rebelbase
I grew up in northeastern NC. It was standard procedure when working in the woods or fishing under overhanging branches to carry a pistol loaded with snake-shot, just in case you ran into a problem with one of these bastards. Cottonmouths are nasty, do not do you the courtesy of warning you with a rattle, and are not to be trifled with.

Prayers for this young soldier's family...

48 posted on 09/17/2008 11:09:51 AM PDT by Jonah Hex ("Never underestimate the hungover side of the Force.")
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To: muawiyah

“They are not particularly aggressive, but you can run into them in the darndest places.”

I’ve had them try to crawl in the boat with me. I had one crawl out on the bank next to me when I was night fishing. When I turned my light on it was looking at me with a bream in it’s mouth. It was a Jerry Clower moment that caused me to ruin a good fishing rod.

49 posted on 09/17/2008 11:10:17 AM PDT by dljordan
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To: muawiyah
Hmm ~ and how fast was that snake “chasing”? Fast enough so my brother in law had to trot to keep ahead of it.
50 posted on 09/17/2008 11:11:46 AM PDT by mbynack (Retired USAF SMSgt)
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To: wardaddy

“I’ve see nests of em look like Medusa’s head
modeled after my ex-wife”

LOL! She’s got a sister that lives in Nashville! I was married to her.

51 posted on 09/17/2008 11:12:26 AM PDT by dljordan
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To: muawiyah
The cottonmouth/water moccasin is one of the most unpredictable and aggressive snakes in the world. Steve Irwin handled almost every type of poisonous snake in the world with impunity. His personal statement was that he would not handle a cottonmouth because they were too unpredictable and aggressive. This from someone that handled mambas to cobras...

My personal experience with Mississippi backwater cottonmouths is that the species is highly aggressive and dangerous. If one encounters a snake ball of cottonmouths, that person is more than likely going to die. I treat numerous animals yearly that have been envenomated by cottonmouths...most successfully.

52 posted on 09/17/2008 11:12:38 AM PDT by vetvetdoug
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To: muawiyah

“Best way to deal with poisonous snakes is to STAY AWAY. Find out what habitat they like locally, and don’t go there.”

Well, since I LIVED in their habitat that would be kind of hard. :)

53 posted on 09/17/2008 11:15:14 AM PDT by dljordan
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To: vetvetdoug
As you recall cottonmouths don't "retreat" and they'll bite anything, including dead animals. Your shoes are no problem for them (as a target).

As far as running into a mess of 'em out in a lake is concerned, that's definitely their habitat ~

A wild predator can advance or stand his ground. You are also a wild predator. Failure of another predator to "retreat" doesn't mean he's advancing on you. In any case human beings are far faster and much more dangerous than any snake.

Most likely all the reports of aggressive cottonmouths arise out of surprise encounters where the human entered into the snake's comfort zone and got bit. They simply don't have a reputation for aggressive hunting of the sort frequently seen when young men try to dig copperheads out of their winter quarters.

54 posted on 09/17/2008 11:22:38 AM PDT by muawiyah
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To: dljordan

Not tough at all ~ stay alert and don’t chase ‘em.

55 posted on 09/17/2008 11:26:28 AM PDT by muawiyah
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To: Rebelbase

I wonder how our Aussie allies handle snakes in their training. When I was down there, I saw species that make the worst of ours look like lawn ornaments.

56 posted on 09/17/2008 11:29:23 AM PDT by tanuki (Summum ius summa iniura. (The more law, the less justice))
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To: therut
I chased a Mojave Rattlesnake similar to this underneath a back yard dwarf citrus (I couldn't tell the difference between it and the Western Diamondback I'd just whacked in the front yard), and couldn't get at it with my long-handled I called Animal Control.

The guy arrived, glanced at the dead Western and was giving me the usual PC speech about not killing mice-eaters, etc.....until we got around back and he yelled, "Sh*t! That's a Mojave! If you ever see another, kill it!!"

Extremely aggressive and 20 times more venemous than our run-of-the mill Westerns.

57 posted on 09/17/2008 11:35:49 AM PDT by ErnBatavia (...forward this to your 10 very best friends....)
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To: poobear
Shades of "Lonesome Dove".


58 posted on 09/17/2008 11:41:19 AM PDT by nothingnew (I fear for my Republic due to marxist influence in our government. Open eyes/see)
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To: Rebelbase

When I lived down in Mississippi as a preteen, we had a Cajun boy from Louisiana stay with us for the summer ... one of Dad’s customer’s kids. We had a pond on the property loaded with Cottonmouths. One day the Cajun boy and I went out in the rowboat to fish, got bored and he said let’s swim. I warned him about the snakes but he said, “Naw don’t worry about ‘em, they can’t bite ya in the water or they’ll drown”. Well he was a high school kid so I figured he knew what he was talking ‘bout. We jumped in the water and you could see the “snakes hanging thick from the cypress trees like sausage on a smokehouse wall” (Jim Stafford song) plop into the water and headed for us. In our haste to get back in the boat, we turned it over. We were quite aways from the bank and had to swim for it. How we got out of that predictament is a miracle as neither of us were bit. God must have had other plans for us. Still gives me the shivers thinking about it. Never listen to a Cajun boy that’s older than you. Ooooo-weeeeeee!

59 posted on 09/17/2008 11:46:15 AM PDT by Mustng959
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To: muawiyah; vetvetdoug

I have found them to be fairly agressive....I saw Irwin try to handle one and it was one of the few snakes he needed the pole with.

Strike prone might be more accurate than aggressive.

Bushmasters and mambas are aggressive.

One moccasin bit my buddy in the ear while swimming....he turned into Joseph Merrick’s ear in 30 minutes

60 posted on 09/17/2008 11:57:25 AM PDT by wardaddy (I want to be David Duchovny's character on Californication for just one week)
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