Social distancing was not prioritized as hundreds of sailors chanted support for their commander Navy Captain Brett Crozier on Friday as he departed his ship.
Captain Crozier was relieved of his duties after acting Navy Secretary Thomas Modly said he showed “poor judgement” by sending an e-mail to 20 or 30 people that asked for help for his infected crew aboard the USS Theodore Roosevelt. Modly implied that the letter was leaked to the San Francisco Chronicle, but later backed away from the suggestion.
Thundering chants of “Captain Crozier!” from hundreds of sailors filled the aircraft carrier’s hangar deck, according to multiple videos on social media, showing the last moments with their commanding officer, Navy Capt. Brett Crozier.
The bond between ship commanders and crew is distinct from every other military command, fused at the “elemental level” in an understanding of the unique power and responsibility a skipper wields, said Bryan McGrath, a former commander of a Navy destroyer.
“It speaks volumes,” McGrath said of the videos. “They’re grateful to him for looking out for them, which is one of the jobs of the commanding officer of a Navy ship. It’s clear they have great affection for him.”
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