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Missing Shiloh sailor found alive on ship

By TYLER HLAVAC | STARS AND STRIPES Published: June 15, 2017

YOKOSUKA NAVAL BASE, Japan — A missing USS Shiloh sailor presumed to have fallen overboard last week has been found alive in the ship’s engineering room, a Navy spokesman said Thursday.

“We can confirm he was found in the engineering space,” said Lt. Cmdr. Matt Knight, a spokesman for U.S. Pacific Fleet in Hawaii. “The circumstances surrounding his disappearance are under investigation.”

Petty Officer 3rd Class Peter Mims went missing June 8, setting off a three-day, 5,500-square-mile sea search in the Philippine Sea. Navy officials suspended the search for Mims on June 11, with the presumption that he was lost at sea.

“I am relieved that this sailor’s family will not be joining the ranks of Gold Star Families that have sacrificed so much for our country,” Carrier Strike Group 5 Commander Rear Adm. Charles Williams said in the Navy statement. “We are thankful to have found our missing shipmate and appreciate all the hard work of our sailors and Japanese partners in searching for him.”

Navy, Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force and Japan Coast Guard ships spent more than 50 hours searching for Mims, the Navy said. Helicopters and other aircraft from the Shiloh, USS McCampbell, USS Barry, USS John S. McCain and the aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan assisted in the search before it was suspended.

The Shiloh crew even continued searching the ship after surface and air searches were canceled, and the crew was in the process of planning a memorial service for Mims, according to Navy statements.

Now that Mims was found alive, he was to be transferred to the USS Ronald Regan for a medical evaluation, the Navy said.

“What I can tell you is that right now we are working to get him to a medical facility so that he can be evaluated and that adequate follow-up care can be prescribed,” Knight said.

Mims joined the Navy in February 2014 and reported to the Shiloh the following August. His awards include the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, Overseas Service Ribbon and Sea Service Ribbon, the statement said.

Mims was presumed to have been the second sailor in a week to fall overboard a ship. On June 6, Petty Officer Christopher Clavin of the USS Normandy was reported missing while the ship trained off the North Carolina coast. Navy and Coast Guard ships searched for Clavin for more than 76 hours, officials said.

Stars and Stripes reporter Wyatt Olson contributed to this story.

hlavac.tyler@stripes.com
 

Peter Mims poses for a photo after being frocked to the rank of petty officer third class during a ceremony aboard the USS Shiloh May 25.
COURTESY PHOTO

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