Remains of all 10 sailors missing from USS John S. McCain collision found: US 7th Fleet

(Left to right, top) Electronics Technician 3rd Class Kenneth Aaron Smith, Interior Communications Electrician 3rd Class Logan Stephen Palmer, Electronics Technician 3rd Class John Henry Hoagland III, Electronics Technician 3rd Class Dustin Louis Doy
(Left to right, top) Electronics Technician 3rd Class Kenneth Aaron Smith, Interior Communications Electrician 3rd Class Logan Stephen Palmer, Electronics Technician 3rd Class John Henry Hoagland III, Electronics Technician 3rd Class Dustin Louis Doyon, Electronics Technician 3rd Class Jacob Daniel Drake, (Left to right, bottom) Information Systems Technician 2nd Class Timothy Thomas Eckles Jr., Electronics Technician 2nd Class Kevin Sayer Bushell, Interior Communications Electrician 1st Class Abraham Lopez and Electronics Technician 1st Class Charles Nathan Findley.PHOTO: REUTERS
Tugboats assist the USS John S. McCain in waters off Singapore on Aug 21, 2017.
Tugboats assist the USS John S. McCain in waters off Singapore on Aug 21, 2017.PHOTO: NYTIMES

SINGAPORE - The remains of all 10 sailors lost from the USS John S. McCain after it collided with an oil tanker near Singapore on Aug 21 have been found within the vessel.

In an update on Monday (Aug 28), the US 7th Fleet said the US Navy and US Marine Corps divers have recovered the remains of all 10 sailors who had served on board the American guided-missile destroyer.

"The incident is under investigation to determine the facts and circumstances of the collision," the statement added.

Singapore's Maritime and Port Authority (MPA) said on Monday that recovery efforts on the vessel have now ceased, as the missing sailors have been recovered. 

The fallen sailors are:

- Electronics Technician 1st Class Charles Nathan Findley, 31, from Amazonia, Missouri

- Interior Communications Electrician 1st Class Abraham Lopez, 39, from El Paso, Texas

- Electronics Technician 2nd Class Kevin Sayer Bushell, 26, from Gaithersburg, Maryland

- Electronics Technician 2nd Class Jacob Daniel Drake, 21, from Cable, Ohio

- Information Systems Technician 2nd Class Timothy Thomas Eckels Jr, 23, from Manchester, Maryland

- Information Systems Technician 2nd Class Corey George Ingram, 28, from Poughkeepsie, New York

- Electronics Technician 3rd Class Dustin Louis Doyon, 26, from Suffield, Connecticut

- Electronics Technician 3rd Class John Henry Hoagland III, 20, from Killeen, Texas

- Interior Communications Electrician 3rd Class Logan Stephen Palmer, 23, from Decatur, Illinois

- Electronics Technician 3rd Class, Kenneth Aaron Smith, 22, from Cherry Hill, New Jersey.

The collision on Aug 21 between the USS John S. McCain and the Liberian-flagged Alnic MC left 10 missing and five navy sailors injured.

 

The collision damaged the US warship's left side, near the stern, punching a hole that stretched above and below the waterline.

Following the collision, Singapore coordinated a search and rescue operation with the United States, Australia, Indonesia and Malaysia, covering 5,524 sq km, an area more than seven times the size of Singapore, MPA said.

It also involved more than 300 personnel from Singapore agencies, including MPA, the Singapore Armed Forces, Singapore Police Coast Guard and the Singapore Civil Defence Force.

The Singapore-led search and rescue operation was suspended at 9pm on Aug 24 after the US Navy announced its suspension of search and rescue efforts to focus on recovery on the USS John S. McCain. 

Singapore continued to support the US Navy in its search on the vessel at Changi Naval Base until all missing crew were accounted for, MPA added. 

 Mr Andrew Tan, MPA chief executive, said: “On behalf of all agencies involved in this search and rescue operation, MPA expresses (its) deepest condolences to the families and loved ones of the deceased US Navy crew. We hope they will find the strength to overcome this difficult time."

 

In a Facebook post on Monday, Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen said: “In this tragic incident, we take some comfort that the bodies of all 10 sailors who passed away on USS John S. McCain were recovered.

“We hope and pray that this final closure will help their bereaved families through this difficult period. May their souls rest in peace.”