Vice Adm. Scott Stearney, the commander of U.S. Naval Forces Central Command/U.S. 5th Fleet, was found dead in his residence in Bahrain on Saturday.
Chief of Naval Operations Adm. John Richardson said that foul play is not suspected, and said the Navy and Stearney’s family are devastated.
“Team, it’s my sad duty to inform you that today the Secretary of the Navy Richard V. Spencer and I were told that Vice Adm. Scott Stearney, our commander of U.S. Naval Forces Central Command / U.S. 5th Fleet, was found deceased in his residence in Bahrain today,” Richardson said. “Scott Stearney was a decorated naval warrior. He was a devoted husband and father, and he was a good friend to all of us. The Naval Criminal Investigative Service and the Bahraini Ministry of Interior are cooperating in the investigation, but at this time no foul play is suspected.”
The details surrounding Stearney’s death were not released.
Stearney, a native of Chicago, was a graduate of the University of Notre Dame and served in the Navy for 36 years. He was previously CENTCOM’s director of operations.
“I fully intend to carry on the many efforts for building partnerships, interoperability and cooperation between the U.S. Navy and the many allied and partner nations from the Arabian Gulf, and beyond, who do so much to keep conflict out of the maritime and promote security and stability,” Stearney said at his change-of-command ceremony in May.
Stearney’s deputy commander of the 5th Fleet, Rear Adm. Paul Schlise, will assume command of the fleet.