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Mystery surrounds death announcement of sailor who died onboard USN ship in June

USS James E. Williams, US Navy destroyer
USS James E. Williams, US Navy destroyer
Military photo, released

Late this afternoon, the Department of Defense announced the death of a female sailor who died onboard the U.S.S James E. Williams (DDG-95) while conducting routine naval operations in the Red Sea.

It remains a mystery as to why the Department of Defense announced the sailor’s death today, nearly six weeks after she died on June 19, 2014. Boatswain’s Mate Seaman Yeshabel Villot-Carrasco died of a non-hostile incident, a little over two weeks after the Arleigh Burke-class destroyer embarked on an eight-month at-sea deployment. The guided-missile destroyer left Norfolk, Va. on May 30.

Villot-Carrasco was a 23-year-old Navy sailor who leaves behind a husband, also in the military, and her parents in Puerto Rico. She was on her first deployment at the time of the incident. Villot-Carrasco's home town of record is listed as Parma, Ohio.

U.S.S. James E. Williams (DDG-95), named for James Eliot Williams, a Medal of Honor recipient, was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom at the time of Villot-Carrasco’s death. The destroyer was commissioned in Charleston, S.C. in 2004.

Additional information on this sailor, including schooling and commendations is available to media sources by contacting the U.S. Naval Forces Europe and Africa public affairs office at 011-39-081-568-3223 or after-hours at 011-39-349-009-4773.

Non-combat deaths occur all too often in the military. Just last night the military released the identity of a Soldier who was killed in a training accident Thursday, July 24. Sgt. Tyler A. Zody, 20, died as a result of a one vehicle accident that also injured three other Soldiers at the Joint Readiness Training Center at Fort Polk.

The accident, said to be a “routine vehicle movement” is under investigation by the Army. Initial reports indicated it was a possible rollover in a Humvee.

Sgt. Zody, a non-commissioned officer, was assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion, 187th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team "Rakkasans" at Fort Campbell as a senior sniper.

Examiner's Note: Additional details on why this death announcement was delayed will be printed as it becomes available.

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