A Virginia Beach sailor died last weekend after being caught up in a rip current, according to the Navy.

The service said that Airman Recruit Ethan Eric Dumbuya, 23, died Saturday, Sept. 11 while swimming at Dam Neck Beach due to a rip current. The U.S. Navy, Coast Guard and local responders were all involved in a search before the Navy Region Mid-Atlantic Fire Department recovered his body on Sept. 12.

Dumbuya was assigned to Strike Fighter Squadron 32 based out of Naval Air Station Oceana. He enlisted in the Navy in December 2020, and had been with the F/A-18 Super Hornet Squadron since May.

“We are mourning the loss of our shipmate and we continue to keep his family in our thoughts and prayers,” Cmdr. Michael Witt, commanding officer of VFA-32, said in a statement.

“He was known for his infectious smile, his willingness to help others, and for his drive to perform his best every single day,” Witt said. “This tragic event will have a lasting impact on our squadron and we will miss him dearly.”

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