Bodies of Seven Marines, One Navy Sailor Found After Their Amphibious Vessel Sank 600 Feet off Coast of California | Beaufort County Now | Last week, we reported that seven United States Marines and one U.S. Navy sailor were missing after their amphibious vessel sank during a training exercise off the coast of San Clemente Island in California. | lifezette, marines, navy sailor, amphibious vessel tank, training exercise, august 10, 2020

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Bodies of Seven Marines, One Navy Sailor Found After Their Amphibious Vessel Sank 600 Feet off Coast of California

Publisher's note: This post appears here courtesy of the LifeZette, and written by Popzette Staff.

    Last week, we reported that seven United States Marines and one U.S. Navy sailor were missing after their amphibious vessel sank during a training exercise off the coast of San Clemente Island in California. Now, their bodies have been found.

    Daily Mail reported that on July 30, sixteen service members were onboard an amphibious assault vehicle when it began to take on water and eventually sunk. Eight Marines were rescued, but one of them has since died and another remains in critical condition at this time.

    The Marines revealed in a Facebook post on Saturday that the remains of the eight missing servicemen have been found.

    "Our hearts and thoughts of the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit are with the families of our recovered Marines and Sailor," said Col. Christopher Bronzi, Commanding officer, 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit. "We hope the successful recovery of our fallen warriors brings some measure of comfort."

    The deceased servicemen have since been identified as:

  • Pfc. Bryan J. Baltierra, 19, of Corona, California, a rifleman; Lance Cpl. Marco A. Barranco, 21, of Montebello, California, a rifleman; Pfc. Evan A. Bath, 19, of Oak Creek, Wisconsin, a rifleman; Pfc. Jack Ryan Ostrovsky, 21, of Bend, Oregon, a rifleman; Cpl. Wesley A. Rodd, 23, of Harris, Texas, a rifleman; Lance Cpl. Chase D. Sweetwood, 19, of Portland, Oregon, a rifleman; Cpl. Cesar A. Villanueva, 21, of Riverside, California, a rifleman; and U.S. Navy Hospitalman Christopher Gnem, 22, of Stockton, California, a hospital corpsman.

    "The recovered Marines and U.S. Navy Sailor will soon be transferred to Dover Air Force Base, Delaware, for preparation by mortuary affairs teams for burial," the Facebook post stated. "Marine and Navy pallbearers will place the remains aboard an aircraft bound for Dover AFB in a solemn transfer. From Dover AFB, their remains will then be released to their families in accordance with their wishes."

    The bodies were found by the U.S. Navy's Undersea Rescue Command, which used underwater remotely operated video systems from the merchant vessel HOS Dominator.

    "The Navy has led the underwater search and salvage efforts," the Facebook post added. "Specialized equipment on a diving and salvage ship to recover the remains and AAV arrived Thursday to relieve the crew of HOS Dominator, which stayed in position after locating the site."

    "The sunken AAV has been successfully recovered. The mishap is under investigation," the statement concluded.


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