Navy, Coast Guard Search for Sailor Overboard off USS Theodore Roosevelt

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USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) departs Apra Harbor in Guam
In this June 4, 2020, photo provided by the U.S. Navy, the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) departs Apra Harbor in Guam. (Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Kaylianna Genier/U.S. Navy via AP)

SAN DIEGO -- Three days after the aircraft carrier Theodore Roosevelt set sail from San Diego, a sailor apparently went overboard Thursday morning in waters off the coast of Southern California, Navy officials said.

Crews aboard the San Diego-based aircraft carrier began search-and-rescue efforts Thursday morning after a lookout spotted what appeared to be a person in the water, according to a news release from the U.S. 3rd Fleet. The initial search involved three helicopters and a small inflatable watercraft.

During a command-wide muster, the carrier crew learned one sailor was unaccounted for, according to Navy officials.

Cmdr. Sean Robertson, a spokesman for the San Diego-based U.S. 3rd Fleet, said a public announcement of the incident was delayed until the Navy could notify the sailor's family.

By Thursday night, the search-and-rescue efforts included the Coast Guard, Navy aircraft and the USS Bunker Hill, USS Russell, USS Howard and USS Charleston.

The Roosevelt left San Diego on Monday for a scheduled deployment just five months after returning in July following an ill-fated deployment that saw a quarter of its crew infected with the novel coronavirus.

A Navy official declined to comment on where the Roosevelt will go or how long its deployment might be, though West Coast carriers commonly deploy to the western Pacific, Indian Ocean or the Persian Gulf.

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-- Staff writer Andrew Dyer contributed to this report. 

This article was written by Alex Riggins from The San Diego Union-Tribune and was legally licensed via the Tribune Content Agency through the Industry Dive publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to legal@industrydive.com.

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