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Sorrow and Scrutiny After a Teenager’s Death at Football Practice

“My immediate thought is that Navy SEAL training is brutally hard, generally, for men in the mid-20s who are some of the best athletes in the whole world. And most of them don’t make it through the training,” said Dr. Casa, the chief executive of the Korey Stringer Institute, an organization based in Connecticut focused on preventing athletes’ deaths. “Most of the best athletes in the world can’t make it through. This is not a good idea for kids to be doing.”

The attention has provoked a sense of defensiveness in the Sachem East community, which includes several mostly white, middle-class towns on Long Island. (Sachem East is one of two high schools in the district; Farmingville is part of the larger town of Brookhaven.) As they grieved, Sachem parents and students remained careful not to point fingers and were protective of the coaches overseeing the training camp where Mr. Mileto died. Many insisted the community needed to grieve before turning to the cause of the fatal accident.

“After he passed, people started gravitating to asking, ‘What if we had done this? What if we had done that? What if we didn’t do…

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