SECNAV Del Toro Tests Positive for COVID-19

January 31, 2022 4:33 PM
Lt. Khiana Odekirk briefs Secretary of the Navy Carlos Del Toro aboard the Freedom-variant littoral combat ship USS Milwaukee (LCS 5) in Ponce, Puerto Rico, Jan. 25, 2022. U.S. Navy Photo

Navy Secretary Carlos Del Toro has tested positive for COVID-19, the service announced on Monday.
After traveling last week, Del Toro tested positive for the virus on Monday, according to a statement from the Navy secretary issued on Monday.

“I returned from official travel last Friday afternoon and my most recent negative tests were prior to my travel on the 21st and again on the morning of the 28th. I am following my physician’s instructions and will quarantine for the next five days at a minimum in accordance with CDC guidelines,” Del Toro said.

The Navy’s top civilian said he will go to meetings remotely during his quarantine and that Meredith Berger – who was confirmed last year as the assistant secretary of the Navy for energy, installations & environment but has been performing the duties of the under secretary of the Navy since August – would physically fill in for Del Toro when needed.

“I am grateful to be fully vaccinated and to have received the booster shot in October as I know my symptoms could be far worse,” Del Toro said. “We must continue to vaccinate our naval forces and look out for our physical health as we finish the fight against COVID. The well-being of our Sailors, Marines, Civilians and their families is of the utmost priority.”

Del Toro’s positive test comes amid the COVID-19 omicron variant wave.

Earlier this month, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Army Gen. Mark Milley and Marine Corps Commandant Gen. David Berger both tested positive for COVID-19.

Mallory Shelbourne

Mallory Shelbourne

Mallory Shelbourne is a reporter for USNI News. She previously covered the Navy for Inside Defense and reported on politics for The Hill.
Follow @MalShelbourne

Get USNI News updates delivered to your inbox