Marine Commandant Gen. Smith released from DC hospital 17 days after heart attack
Stars and Stripes November 16, 2023
WASHINGTON – Gen. Eric Smith, commandant of the Marine Corps, has been released from the hospital after more than two weeks of treatment following a heart attack, officials said Thursday.
Smith suffered the heart attack on Oct. 29 and was hospitalized at a Washington facility for 17 days, the Marine Corps said in a statement. Smith will return to the hospital soon for a medical procedure, the statement added.
“Smith’s recovery is well ahead of schedule, and he is now focused on preparing for an upcoming procedure to repair a bicuspid aortic valve in his heart, which his doctors assess directly contributed to his cardiac arrest,” the statement added.
Last week, Smith said he was grateful for an “outpouring of support” and said he was looking forward to “getting back in the fight as soon as I can.”
At the time of his heart attack, Smith had been performing the duties of commandant and assistant commandant because the general nominated to become the assistant commandant was blocked from promotion along with hundreds of other military personnel by Sen. Tommy Tuberville, R-Ala. A few days after Smith’s heart attack, the Senate got around Tuberville’s blockade by individually confirming a few more top Pentagon nominees, including Lt. Gen. Christopher Mahoney as assistant commandant.
“Gen. Mahoney and I see eye to eye on the strategic direction of [the Marines] and we are fortunate to be surrounded by a Marine Corps family filled with America’s finest leaders,” Smith said on Thursday.
Mahoney will perform Smith’s duties until he is medically cleared to return to duty.