The commander began exhibiting symptoms before he was removed from the warship on Thursday, two of his classmates said. Capt. Brett E. Crozier was fired following a leak to The San Francisco Chronicle of a letter he had emailed to Navy leaders that detailed the failures on the service’s part to provide the necessary resources to swiftly move sailors off the carrier and disinfect areas on board as the virus spread through the ship.
The news of Crozier’s diagnosis is likely to fuel further skepticism of the Navy’s handling of the outbreak aboard the aircraft carrier, which has already received notable criticism from the rank and file. On Friday, videos circulated showing hundreds of sailors aboard the Roosevelt cheering for Crozier as he disembarked the ship. Memes depicting the Navy captain rescuing his sailors from a burning building over saving his own career sprouted up across social media.