USS John S. McCain commanding officer, executive officer relieved after deadly August collision

YOKOSUKA, Japan – The commanding officer and executive officer of the USS John S. McCain were relieved of their duties by Vice Adm.Phil Sawyer, Commander of the Seventh Fleet Tuesday, according to the U.S. Navy.

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

The USS John S. McCain was involved in a collision with the merchant vessel Alnic MC on August 21. The collision killed 10 Sailors, injured five and damaged both ships.

The Navy says that while the investigation is ongoing, 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), while Cmdr. J. Sanchez was reassigned to Ship Repair Facility (SRF) Yokosuka.

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

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Full Coverage: USS John S. McCain Collision