USS Philippine Sea’s CO Dies in Florida

The commanding officer of the guided-missile cruiser USS Philippine Sea (CG 58) died Oct. 10 at Naval Hospital (NH) Jacksonville, Florida.

Capt. Wesley A. Smith was at his home when Naval Air Station (NAS) Jacksonville Fire Department responded to a fire at his residence on base at approximately 8 p.m. Smith was found unresponsive and transported to Naval Hospital Jacksonville where he was pronounced dead. The cause of death has not been determined.

Smith, 50, a surface warfare officer, assumed command of Philippine Sea in October 2013. He was from Virginia and entered the U.S. Navy in March, 1990. He previously commanded guided-missile destroyer USS The Sullivans (DDG 68). He is survived by his wife and two children.

The ship’s executive officer, Cmdr. Nathan Rowan, has temporarily assumed command.

Philippine Sea is pierside in her homeport of Mayport, Florida.

Image: US Navy

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