U.S. Navy Sailor Dies in Small Boat Accident in Red Sea

The guided-missile destroyer USS Jason Dunham (DDG 109) conducts a passing exercise (PASSEX) with the Egyptian Navy ship El Zafer (F951), top, July 1, 2018. U.S. Navy photo

A U.S. Navy sailor assigned to the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Jason Dunham (DDG 109) died Sunday from injuries sustained while conducting small boat operations July 8, the U.S. Navy’s 5th Fleet said in a statement.

The sailor was medically evacuated to a hospital in Aqaba, Jordan, and was pronounced dead at 12:45 p.m., local time, the statement said.

The Navy on Tuesday identified the deceased as Ensign Sarah Mitchell, 23, of Feasterville, Pennsylvania. No other Sailors were injured and an investigation is ongoing, it said. 

Dunham is deployed to the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations in support of naval operations to ensure maritime stability and security in the Central region, connecting the Mediterranean and the Pacific through the western Indian Ocean and three strategic choke points, according to the Navy.

A spokesperson for the Pentagon told USNI News that there is no evidence of foul play and the sailor died in a “non-hostile” environment.