US warship crash: Sea search efforts for missing sailors suspended

US warship crash: Sea search efforts for missing sailors suspended
US sailors (top row, from left) Timothy Thomas Eckels Jr, 23; Dustin Louis Doyon, 26; Jacob Daniel Drake, 21; (middle row, from left) Kevin Sayer Bushell, 26; John Henry Hoagland III, 20; Charles Nathan Findley, 31; (bottom row, from left) Abraham Lopez, 39; Logan Stephen Palmer, 23; and Kenneth Aaron Smith, 22, had gone missing following Monday (21 August) morning’s mid-sea collision. Smith’s remains have since been recovered. (PHOTOS: US Navy)

The multinational search and rescue (SAR) efforts for the missing US sailors from the USS John S McCain have been suspended, said the US Navy and Singapore’s Maritime and Port Authority (MPA) in separate media releases on Thursday (24 August) night.

US Navy and Marine Corps divers will focus on recovery efforts inside the flooded compartments of the guided-missile destroyer, which collided with a Liberian-flagged oil tanker off Singapore’s coast on Monday morning.

The US Navy release also named the deceased sailor – 22-year-old Electronics Technician 3rd Class Kenneth Aaron Smith – whose remains were found on Tuesday, along with the nine other sailors who have yet to be found.

The missing sailors are:

Electronics Technician 1st Class Charles Nathan Findley, 31
Interior Communications Electrician 1st Class Abraham Lopez, 39
Electronics Technician 2nd Class Kevin Sayer Bushell, 26
Electronics Technician 2nd Class Jacob Daniel Drake, 21
Information Systems Technician 2nd Class Timothy Thomas Eckels Jr., 23
Information Systems Technician 2nd Class Corey George Ingram, 28
Electronics Technician 3rd Class Dustin Louis Doyon, 26
Electronics Technician 3rd Class John Henry Hoagland III, 20
Interior Communications Electrician 3rd Class Logan Stephen Palmer, 23

Separately, the MPA said that Singapore would continue to support the US Navy in their search aboard the damaged vessel.

The Singapore-coordinated SAR efforts with the US, Indonesia, Malaysia and Australia covered 5,524 sq km and involved more than 300 personnel from various Singapore agencies over the past four days, the MPA’s release said.

“As the co-ordinating agency for the four-day search and rescue efforts, MPA thanks all personnel from participating nations who worked tirelessly with the Singapore agencies to assist the US Navy,” said MPA chief executive Andrew Tan.

“We would like to express our condolences to the families and loved ones of the deceased US Navy crew, and wish the injured crew speedy recovery.”

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