Admiral Commanding US Navy Forces in the Middle East, 58, Found Dead at Home in Bahrain
BAHRAIN – December 2, 2018
The commander of US naval forces in the Middle East, Vice Adm. Scott Stearney, was found dead on Saturday at his residence in Bahrain. The US Navy, investigating the Fifth Fleet chief’s death, said no foul play is suspected at this point.
Stearney was found dead at his residence in the Gulf country. He took up the post of commander of US Naval Forces Central Command – including the US Fifth Fleet – and Combined Maritime Forces in May.
“This is devastating news for the Stearney family, for the team at Fifth Fleet and for the entire Navy. Scott Stearney was a decorated naval warrior,” read a statement from Admiral John Richardson, Chief of Naval Operations.
“At this time no foul play is suspected,” the message read.
Team, it's my sad duty to inform you that today the Secretary of the Navy and I were informed that Vice Adm. Scott Stearney, our commander of U.S. Naval Forces Central Command and commander of U.S. Fifth Fleet in Bahrain, was found deceased in his residence in Bahrain today. pic.twitter.com/FN8DAlWUng— Adm. John Richardson (@CNORichardson) December 1, 2018
Richardson said the Naval Criminal Investigative Service and the Bahraini Interior Ministry were cooperating on the investigation. The Fifth Fleet’s deputy commander, Rear Admiral Paul Schlise, assumed command.
From Chicago, Stearney entered the US Navy in 1982 after graduating from the University of Notre Dame with a bachelor’s degree in economics. He later obtained a master’s degree from the National Defense University.
He served in several strike fighter squadrons flying the FA-18 Hornet and in Kabul, Afghanistan, as Chief of Staff of Joint Task Force 435 and later Combined Joint Interagency Task Force 435.
In the US, Stearney served in various roles, including as instructor and Readiness Officer at Navy Fighter Weapons School, according to his official biography. He also held various senior posts, including as Director of Operations at US Central Command.