Cadet Candidate passes following accident

By West Point Media Relations

September 5th, 2019 | News, News and Features
 Cadet Candidate Benjamin K. Bochtler

U.S. Military Academy Preparatory School Cadet Candidate Benjamin K. Bochtler died due to injuries sustained from an accident at a cliff diving location in Hunter, New York, Aug. 31.
“Cadet Candidate Bochtler had an incredible smile and infectious positive attitude. He was everyone’s friend. Ben was a prior-enlisted combat veteran who set a tremendous example and used his experience in the Army to help his fellow cadet candidates,” Col. Joshua Higgins, commandant of the U.S. Military Academy Preparatory School, said. “His warm personality and that big smile made a lasting impact on everyone at USMAPS. Our thoughts and prayers are with him, his family and friends.”
Bochtler, 20, of Bellevue, Nebraska, passed after a portion of the rock broke from the ledge, causing him to fall. Life-saving measures at the scene were unsuccessful.
“I would like to thank the New York State Police and the first responders that attempted to save Ben’s life,” Higgins said.
Bochtler entered the prep school in July 2019. He was prior service and enlisted in the United States Army in 2016 as an unmanned aircraft systems operator. He attended training at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri, and advanced training at Fort Huachuca, Arizona.
Bochtler was assigned to the 299th Brigade Engineer Battalion at Fort Carson, Colorado from March 2018 to July 2019, and deployed to Afghanistan from April 2018 to January 2019 in support of Operation Freedom’s Sentinel.
Memorial service and funeral arrangements information are not available at this time.