By Ken Stone
Following a man overboard report on the Lincoln, search operations began in the Arabian Sea by USS Leyte Gulf, Patrol Squadron 10, Patrol Squadron 40 and Spanish Álvaro de Bazán-class frigate Méndez Núñez, the Navy said.
The search was concluded Friday after extensive attempts to find the sailor, who has not been identified.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the family, friends and shipmates of our lost sailor,” said Vice Adm. Jim Malloy, commander, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, U.S. 5th Fleet and Combined Maritime Forces.
“During this tragic time, I want to thank the Spanish Álvaro de Bazán-class frigate Méndez Núñez for their assistance in the search operations, and all the sailors involved in the search for their valiant efforts to find our shipmate.”
The sailor remains listed as Duty Status Whereabouts Unknown. The sailor’s name is being withheld in accordance with Navy policy. Next of kin notification has been completed.
HSC-5 is part of Carrier Air Wing 7, assigned to the Abraham Lincoln Carrier Strike Group.
The aircraft carrier Lincoln left Norfolk, Virginia, in early April for a deployment that will end at Naval Air Station North Island.
The date “the Abe” arrives isn’t clear, but the Navy has said the homeport change to San Diego is effective Oct. 31, 2019 — Halloween.
The 30-year-old nuclear-powered flattop, which visited San Diego multiple times when its home was Alameda, served in the Pacific Fleet from 1990 to 2011 before moving to Virginia for midlife refueling.
Lincoln’s move is part of a three-carrier homeport swap, which saw the USS Carl Vinson leaving San Diego for Naval Base Kitsap-Bremerton, Wash., and USS John C. Stennis leaving Bremerton for Norfolk.
The San Diego Union-Tribune, citing an unnamed Navy source, said many Lincoln crew families have relocated to San Diego ahead of the start of the 2019-2020 school year.
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