7 sailors missing in ship collision found dead

7 sailors missing in ship collision found dead
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All seven U.S. sailors who were unaccounted for after a Navy destroyer collided with a merchant ship off the coast of Japan on Saturday have been found dead.

The U.S. Navy said Saturday night that the crew members' bodies were found in a flooded compartment of the USS Fitzgerald, and are being taken to Naval Hospital Yokosuka to be identified. 

"The families are being notified and being provided the support they need during this difficult time," the Navy said in a statement. "The names of the Sailors will be released after all notifications are made."

An official confirmed to CNN late Saturday that all seven missing had been found dead.


The sailors went missing after the Saturday morning collision. The ship was towed to Yokosuka Naval Base and the sailors' bodies were found when rescue workers gained access to spaces of the ship that were damaged in the collision.

The incident between the USS Fitzgerald and the merchant vessel happened at about 2:30 a.m. local time on Saturday, about 56 nautical miles southwest of Yokosuka, Japan, the U.S. 7th Fleet said in a news release.

In a tweet, the 7th Fleet said the vessel was the Philippine-flagged merchant ship ACX Crystal. The Navy asked for and received help from the Japanese Coast Guard in responding to the collision. The Fitzgerald was tugged back to Yokosuka Naval Base on Saturday.

The incident is being investigated.

Updated 11:57 p.m.