THE two Navy Seals who vanished at sea during a raid on a ship have been identified.
Navy Special Warfare Operator 2nd Class Nathan Gage Ingram, 37, and Navy Special Warfare Operator 1st Class Christopher J. Chambers, 27, were last seen entering the waters off Somalia.
The two were involved in the raid on January 11 on a ship that was taking Iranian weapons to Houthis in Yemen.
An 11-day search and rescue mission was held to find the men, however, it has now turned into a recovery effort.
Ingram slipped and fell while climbing a ladder onto the ship, said the Navy in a statement.
It is believed he fell into a gap that was created between the vessel and the Seals’ combatant craft.
Chambers jumped into the gap to save Ingram as he went under, said Pentagon officials.
However, the men were weighed down by their body armor and heavy equipment, dragging them deep into the Arabian Sea before dying.
“Chris and Gage selflessly served their country with unwavering professionalism and exceptional capabilities,” said Captain Blake Chaney, commander of Naval Special Warfare Group 1.
“This loss is devastating for NSW, our families, the special operations community, and across the nation.”
Chambers, who was from Maryland, enlisted in 2012 and served with West Coast-based Seal units, according to the Naval Special Warfare Command.
“His awards and decorations include the Navy/Marine Corps Achievement Medal with Combat ‘C,’ three Navy/Marine Corps Achievement Medals,Achievement Medal, Combat Action Ribbon, and other personal and unit awards,” read a statement.
Ingram, a resident of Texas, enlisted in 2019, serving with West Coast-based Seal units and earning several personal and unit awards.
President Joe Biden also released a statement, saying: “Jill and I are mourning the tragic deaths of two of America’s finest — Navy SEALs who were lost at sea while executing a mission off the coast of East Africa last week.”
Biden added that the Seals represent “the very best of our country, pledging their lives to protect their fellow Americans. Ourgo out to the members, loved ones, friends, and shipmates who are grieving for these two brave Americans.”
An investigation into the incidents is underway and is set to examine if the Seals were equipped for the mission, if procedures were followed, and decisions in the timing and approval of the raid, including the weather and state of the seas.
The raid was the latest seizure by the US Navy of weapon shipments headed to Yemen rebels, who launched several attacks threatening global trade in the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden.
Just today, the UK launched a second strike on Houthi rebels after they refused to stop attacks on ships in the Red Sea.
Four RAF Typhoon jets blasted laser-guided bombs in a UK-led strike with the US.
It came hours after Biden and UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak warned the militants that they would strike Yemen again “if needed.”
The fourTyphoon jets were accompanied by two Voyager tankers and US forces, striking Houthi targets at military sites near the Sanaa airfield.
“Dangerous Houthi attacks on shipping in the Red Sea have continued to threaten the lives of sailors and disrupt shipping at an intolerable cost to the global economy,” said UK Defense Secretary Grant Shapps.
“Along with our US partners, we have conducted a further round ofin self-defense.
“Aimed at degrading Houthi capabilities, this action will deal another blow to their limited stockpiles and ability to threaten global trade.
“Alongside our ongoing diplomatic efforts, we will continue to support regional stability across the Middle East, working hand in hand with our like-minded partners.”
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