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Navy Identifies Chief Who Died Aboard USS Theodore Roosevelt

Chief Aviation Electronics Technician Justin Calderone, assigned to the “Blue Diamonds” of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 146, observes flight operations on the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) while participating in Exercise Northern Edge 2019. US Navy photo.

The Navy identified Aviation Electronics Technician Chief Petty Officer Justin Calderone as the sailor aboard USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN-71) who died yesterday from a medical emergency.

Calderone served in Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 146. The Ohio native enlisted in the Navy in 2003. His personal awards include the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal (5 awards), the National Defense Service Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, and the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, according to a Navy news release.

“It is a tragedy to lose a shipmate,” Cmdr. Kevin McNatt, commanding officer of VFA-146, said in the news release.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and shipmates of Chief Calderone during this difficult time.”

According to the Navy, Calderone suffered a medical emergency on July 2 and received immediate medical care aboard the ship. He was transferred by a helicopter assigned to Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 8 to a military medical facility ashore, where he was declared dead.

Theodore Roosevelt was on its way back to its San Diego homeport when the emergency occurred. The carrier deployed in January but spent much of the spring in Guam, fighting off a COVID-19 outbreak that ultimately infected more than 1,000 sailors on the carrier.

The news release notes that all personnel on Theodore Roosevelt had been tested multiple times for COVID-19 and that Calderone tested negative consistently.

The service has not commented on the nature of the medical emergency.

Categories: News & Analysis, U.S. Navy
Megan Eckstein

About Megan Eckstein

Megan Eckstein is the deputy editor for USNI News. She previously covered Congress for Defense Daily and the U.S. surface navy and U.S. amphibious operations as an associate editor for Inside the Navy.