Political News

What we know about USS John S. McCain's sailors

Posted August 24

The US Navy has released the names and hometowns of 10 sailors who went missing when the USS John S. McCain, a guided-missile destroyer, collided with a merchant ship near Singapore, east of the Malacca Strait on Monday.

A Thursday statement from the Navy's 7th Fleet confirmed the recovered remains of one sailor had been identified as 22-year-old Kenneth Smith, of New Jersey.

The Navy suspended the search for the nine sailors who are still missing after "more than 80 hours of multinational search efforts," the statement said. Here's what we know about them:

Kevin Bushell, Gaithersburg, Maryland

Bushell is an electronics technician from Gaithersburg, Maryland.

The 26-year-old enlisted in July 2011 and reported for duty aboard the USS John S. McCain in January 2016, according to Navy records.

Bushell's family asked for privacy but said in a statement to CNN affiliate WBAL that their thoughts and prayers were with the loved ones of the other missing sailors.

Dustin Doyon, Suffield, Connecticut

Dustin Doyon is a 26-year-old electronics technician. Doyon has served in the Navy since April 2015.

Connecticut Rep. Joe Courtney, who said his office is in close contact with the Navy, tweeted, "Thoughts and prayers are with the Doyon family."

"We appreciate the courageous work of the crew in the aftermath of the collision and the continuing rescue efforts," Doyon's family said in a statement to CNN affiliate WFSB. "As you can imagine, this is a very difficult time for our family and we respectfully request that you honor our privacy."

Jacob Drake, Cable, Ohio

Jacob Drake is an electronics technician, the 7th Fleet's statement said. He is 21.

Drake joined the Navy in September 2013, the Navy's records indicate.

"A terrible tragedy. I'm praying for all, especially Ohio's own Jacob Drake," Gov. John Kasich tweeted.

"Service members like Jacob represent the very best of our state, and I'm hopeful the divers searching for these brave sailors can find him and bring him home safely," Sen. Sherrod Brown said in a statement earlier this week.

Timothy Eckels Jr., Manchester, Maryland

Eckels, a 23-year-old information systems technician, joined in October 2013. He reported for duty on the USS John S. McCain last October.

In a Facebook post, Gov. Larry Hogan said he and his wife were "heartbroken" to learn that Eckels and Bushell were among the missing.

"We hope that all Marylanders will join us in lifting their families up in prayer during this time of unfathomable grief," he said.

Charles Findley, Amazonia, Missouri

Findley is an electronics technician, according to the 7th Fleet. He's served since February 2008.

Findley's sister, Amy Winters, told CNN affiliate WDAF that her brother loved his job as a Navy electronics technician. He grew up in Parkville, Missouri.

"He loved traveling the world with the Navy and he had so many friends and the Navy truly is his family," she said.

Findley, 31, has an 8-year-old daughter and a 6-year-old son, according to WDAF. They live in Virginia with their mother. "He wanted to make something of himself and make his family proud," Winters told WDAF.

John "CJ" Hoagland III, Killeen, Texas

Hoagland, a 20-year-old electronics technician, enlisted in July 2015.

His mother, Cynthia Kimball, told CNN on Thursday that her son loves people, his country and his family.

"He would've done anything for anybody," she said. "We're very proud of the person that he is and the person that he's grown into."

In an interview with CNN affiliate KPRC, Kimball said her son wanted to join the military since he was five years old, "and he was dead set on it."

Hoagland loved his job and the people he worked with, she said.

"I want him to come home. I want to know where he is, but I don't know what to think anymore," Kimball told KPRC.

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Corey Ingram, Poughkeepsie, New York

Ingram is a 28-year-old information systems technician who has served in the Navy since 2008.

Rep. Sean Maloney said in a statement posted to his Twitter page that Ingram is from Poughkeepsie.

"This is heartbreaking," Maloney said. "Petty Officer Ingram is an American hero and this tragedy is a reminder of the risks that our service members take every day to keep our country safe."

Abraham Lopez, El Paso, Texas

The 7th Fleet's statement identified Lopez as an interior communications electrician. He is 39.

Lopez enlisted in the Navy in December 1997. Before serving on the USS John S. McCain, he served on the USS Boxer and the USS Curtis Wilbur.

In a statement sent to CNN, Gov. Greg Abbott said of both Lopez and Hoagland, "These two brave men represent the best Texas has to offer, putting their lives on the line to selflessly serve their country."

Logan Palmer, Decatur, Illinois

Palmer is a 23-year-old interior communications electrician. He joined the Navy last April.

His older brother told CNN affiliate WCIA that his brother is a determined young man.

"You tell him that he won't be able to do it, he's going to show you that he can do it," Austin Palmer said. "That's why I believe that he's going to get through this."

Right now, he said, he misses his younger brother. The entire family would like to see him again.

In a Facebook post, Illinois Rep. Rodney Davis said he spoke with Palmer's mother and his thoughts and prayers "continue to be with this extremely proud and patriotic family."

"Our military must do whatever necessary to minimize incidents like this and protect those who risk their lives each day in service to our country," Davis said.

Kenneth Smith, Cherry Hill, New Jersey

Smith was an electronics technician. According to the Navy's records, Smith, 22, joined in May 2014.

Upon hearing that the Navy had identified the remains of her son, Smith's mother, April Brandon, thanked everyone for their prayers and sympathy, CNN affiliate WDIV reported.

"Kenneth was a great young man, son, and sailor. He truly loved his family, the Navy, and his shipmates," Brandon said in a statement.

"As you can imagine, this is a very difficult time for our family and I respectfully request that you allow us to grieve in private," she said.

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