US Navy relieves USS John S. McCain commanding and executive officers

The US Navy has fired the commanding and executive officers of guided-missile destroyer USS John S. McCain following a collision in which 10 US sailors lost their lives.

Commanding officer, Cmdr. Alfredo J. Sanchez, and executive officer, Cmdr. Jessie L. Sanchez, were relieved of their duties on October 11 due to a loss of confidence.

John S. McCain was involved in a collision with the merchant vessel Alnic MC on August 21.

While the investigation is ongoing, it is evident the collision was preventable, the commanding officer exercised poor judgement, and the executive officer exercised poor leadership of the ship’s training program.

Cmdr. A. Sanchez was reassigned to Commander, Naval Forces Japan (CNFJ) and Cmdr. J. Sanchez was reassigned to Ship Repair Facility (SRF) Yokosuka.

Cmdr. Ed Angelinas, former commanding officer of USS McCampbell (DDG 85), assumed duties as acting commanding officer. Lt. Cmdr. Ray Ball, chief engineer of USS Antietam (CG 54), will assume duties as acting executive officer.

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