A sailor assigned to the aircraft carrier Theodore Roosevelt killed himself Tuesday morning while standing security watch on a pier at Naval Air Station North Island, California, Navy officials confirmed.
The name of the sailor, who officials said “died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound,” has not been released, pending next-of-kin notification.
The suicide occurred at about 8 a.m. on Coronado Island, California, and the sailor was transported to the University of California-San Diego Medical Center and pronounced dead, Navy spokesman Brian O’Rourke told Navy Times.
The Naval Criminal Investigative Service is investigating, he said.
Military suicides dropped last year, but preliminary numbers show that 2020 could reverse that progress.
The sailor’s death came on the same day the carrier got underway Tuesday for “routine training at sea,” according to Naval Air Forces spokesman Cmdr. Zachary Harrell.
Several sources from within the carrier’s community told Navy Times in September that the crew has been told to expect to deploy anywhere from November to January ― just a few months after returning to San Diego in July following a deployment that saw a quarter of the crew infected with the novel coronavirus, sidelining the ship in Guam for months.
The Navy has declined to comment on the specifics of any looming deployment, but officials noted the ship is in a phase where it must be ready to deploy on “short notice” and that “deployment resiliency” resources and other assistance are being provided to the carrier’s crew and family members.
If you, a friend or a loved one is in crisis, please connect with a trained counselor now. Confidential, immediate help is available 24/7 at no cost to active duty, Guard and reserve members, their families and friends. Contact the Military Crisis Line at 800-273-8255, then press 1, or access online chat by texting 838255. Your life matters.