Despite unknowns of Navy ship collision, 'Americans should remain confident'

Retired Rear Admiral Vic Guillory shares expertise

By Kent Justice - Anchor/reporter

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - The Navy continues to search for sailors after a collision near Singapore that left a hole on the port side of the USS John S. McCain.

But the Navy is also seeking answers: Why have four ships this year had incidents in the waters of Asia?

Beyond the continuing search for survivors, the chief of Naval Operations has ordered something rare called a one-day operational pause.

The former commander of the U.S. Fourth Fleet, retired Rear Admiral Vic Guillory, weighed in on the situation Tuesday.

“We have ships and aircraft and submarines literally deployed around the world,” said Guillory, adding that Americans should remain confident the Navy is going about business in a professional way.

He also explained the call for an operational pause, saying it’s due diligence on the part of leadership.
The Navy will look at the ways ships are trained and certified to deploy.

“The chief of Naval Operations has asked those organizations to take a look at how we're doing it (and ask questions such as), ‘Are we missing anything? Is there something better we can do to ensure the forces deployed are ready to execute the mission?’” Guillory said.

The Navy is ordering the top-to-bottom review of operations. Some military experts said a shake-up in leadership may be ahead.

In the meantime, the search continues: for the missing sailors and for critical information.

“Our thoughts and prayers continue to be with the families of those sailors and the families of our sailors who were injured,” said Admiral Scott Swift, commander of the U.S. Navy's Pacific Fleet.

Added Guillory, “This is what needs to be done right now. I personally know from my Navy experience (that) there's a lot of questions, but that's never good information to make decisions on. You need the facts.”

Beyond the 10 sailors who are missing, five more were injured in the collision Monday.

Guillory said that eventually, the country will learn of the heroic acts aboard the ship and what some sailors did to save their shipmates.

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