NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (WAVY) — Three sailors who served on the USS George Washington aircraft carrier have been found dead in less than a week, the U.S. Navy said.
The nuclear-powered Nimitz-class aircraft carrier is currently undergoing refueling and a complex overhaul at Newport News Shipbuilding. Lt. Commander Rob Myers with the Navy confirmed the deaths Tuesday.
At this time, the Navy hasn’t released the causes of death or circumstances for any of the sailors but said the deaths are not believed to be connected and are under investigation separately. Naval Criminal Investigative Service and local authorities are investigating.
Two of the sailors were found April 9 and 10 at off-base locations in Hampton, Myers said. Retail Services Specialist 3rd Class Mikail Sharp was found April 9 and Interior Communications Electrician 3rd Class Natasha Huffman was found April 10.
The third sailor, who hasn’t been identified, was found unresponsive Friday, April 15. on the carrier.
“The Sailor was treated by the medical team on board before being transported to Riverside Regional Medical Center in Newport News where the service member passed away,” Naval Air Force Atlantic spokesman Michael Maus said in an email to the Navy Times. “The incident is under investigation and the command continues to cooperate with (the Naval Criminal Investigative Service).”
The name of the unidentified sailor will be released when the next of kin has been notified, Myers said.
While the Navy did not provide a cause of death, NewsNation asked Hampton police what information they could provide on the investigations, who said:
“It is our standard practice to withhold details on death investigations involving suicide.”
Earlier Tuesday, NewsNation correspondent Kellie Meyer asked Pentagon spokesperson, John Kirby, about the deaths, who had this to say:
“I would refer you to the Navy, Kellie. In my understanding, from speaking to Navy officials this morning, is that they’re still investigating these deaths. I don’t believe that they’re aware of any indications that they are related. That’s what they believe right now and I think we need to give them time to properly investigate these deaths.”