A woman who says her son is the naval officer reported lost at sea off the coast of California this week said she's learning more about the search for him through media reports than from Navy leaders.
Alicia McCalla, who identifies herself as a Marine veteran in a heartfelt Facebook video, said three sailors notified her and her husband Sunday evening that their son, Lt. j.g. Asante McCalla, was missing.
"So far, we have not been contacted by anyone on his ship, the CG-70 USS Lake Erie," Alicia McCalla said in the video, her voice breaking as she held a large photo of her son. "We have received newspaper accounts."
The video was posted to Facebook on Tuesday at about 7 a.m. It's not immediately clear whether Alicia McCalla has since spoken to anyone from the guided-missile cruiser Lake Erie. She did not respond to a request for comment from Military.com
Cmdr. John Fage, a spokesman for U.S. 3rd Fleet, declined to comment on the video, adding that the search-and-rescue mission continued into Wednesday. The Navy was not releasing the missing Lake Erie sailor's name, he added.
Asante McCalla is an "excellent child," his mother said in the video. The 24-year-old officer graduated from Morehouse College in Atlanta, she told WXIA, an NBC affiliate there. She and her husband have been wearing their Morehouse parent pins since he was reported missing, she added.
The officer is a loving, religious person; doesn't drink; and was not suicidal, according to his parents. His father Howard, a high school principal, told WXIA he'd spoken with his son via video chat just before the crew headed out to sea for a training exercise.
"I've always told him, 'You be the best, and you never settle for nothing less,' " Howard McCalla told WXIA. "And that's the last thing I said to him on Friday."
In her Facebook video, Alicia McCalla asked friends and family to help her get answers.
"Please share this video and help us by either praying or help us by letting the Navy know that we've got to know what has happened to Lt. j.g. McCalla," she said.