The aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt leads the guided-missile destroyer USS Russell and guided-missile cruiser USS Bunker Hill in the eastern Pacific Ocean last year. Navy photo

The U.S. Navy ended search-and-rescue efforts Saturday for a missing sailor, now believed lost, who was assigned to the USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71).

Officials changed his status to deceased.

The search ended at sunset after rescuers searched more than 607 square nautical miles for more than 55 hours. It began Thursday when a spotter on the ship noticed a person in the water.

Participants in the search included the USS Theodore Roosevelt, USS Bunker Hill (CG 52), USS Russell (DDG 59), USS Howard (DDG 83), USS Charleston (LCS 18), USS Portland (LPD 27) the U.S. Coast Guard and both fixed and rotary wing air assets.

The Navy notified the sailor’s family prior to ending the search.

“The loss of our sailor is felt deeply by all on board,” said Capt. Eric Anduze, commanding officer of the aircraft carrier. “The entire Theodore Roosevelt team sends our deepest condolences to the family of our missing shipmate.”

Rear Admiral Doug Verissimo, commander, Carrier Strike Group Nine, said, “The Carrier Strike Group Nine team sends our thoughts and prayers to the family and loved ones of our missing shipmate. I offer my thanks to all the Sailors and Coast Guardsmen who were involved in the search.”

The incident remains under investigation.

– Staff reports

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