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YOKOSUKA, Japan - The commanding officer, Cmdr. Alfredo J. Sanchez, and executive officer, Cmdr. Jessie L. Sanchez, of the guided-missile destroyer USS John S. McCain (DDG 56) were relieved of their duties by Vice Adm. Phil Sawyer, Commander, Seventh Fleet, on Oct. 11. Both were relieved due to a loss of confidence.
John S. McCain was involved in a collision with the merchant vessel Alnic MC Aug. 21 that claimed the lives of 10 Sailors, injured five more, and damaged both ships.
While the investigation is ongoing, it is evident the collision was preventable, the commanding officer exercised poor judgment, 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.