The U.S. Navy has finished testing all sailors aboard the USS Theodore Roosevelt for coronavirus, it announced Thursday.
“As of today, 100% of USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) crewmembers have been tested for COVID-19, with 840 total positive and 4,098 negative results,” Pacific Fleet spokesman Navy Cmdr. J. Myers Vasquez said in a statement. He said a small number of results are still pending.
So far, there has been one sailor death. Four sailors are currently in the hospital — down from a high point of nine on Tuesday, and one sailor who was in the Intensive Care Unit has improved and is one of the four in the hospital.
Most of the crew — 4,234 of approximately 4,885 sailors — have been moved ashore in Guam, where the Roosevelt is docked.
The completion in testing of the crew comes as the Navy prepares to announce the fate of the ship’s former commander, Capt. Brett Crozier.
Crozier was relieved after a memo he wrote warning that sailors would die if they were not let off the ship faster was leaked to his hometown paper.
Then-Navy Secretary Thomas Modly fired Crozier over the leak, arguing that Crozier had many ways to alert him of his concerns but decided to do so in a way that also exposed U.S. vulnerability to adversaries in the region, namely China.
After video surfaced of the ship’s crew cheering Crozier, Democrats took up Crozier as a hero and tried to link his firing to President Trump despite the president having nothing to do with the decision. Modly addressed the ship’s crew in a speech that promptly leaked to the press, and he resigned shortly thereafter.
Navy leaders ordered an investigation into Crozier’s actions, which they are slated to turn over to Defense Secretary Mark Esper any day.
Supporters of Crozier argue that he sacrificed his career for the safety of the ship’s crew, but critics say he went outside his chain of command and to the media instead of the Navy secretary.
As the nation waits for the outcome of the investigation, the Roosevelt’s crew has been working to get the ship back at sea.
The Navy is pursuing several phases. Currently, a core number of sailors is aboard the ship, operating “essential services” to keep it operational.
All other sailors have been moved off to isolate or quarantine, according to Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines.
Those testing positive will isolate at the U.S. naval base in Guam, under medical care by Navy medical staff.
Those testing negative are in quarantine in hotels off base, restricted to their individual rooms for at least 14 days, and are being evaluated daily. They are being fed by U.S. service members stationed at Guam.
Navy leaders are evaluating the appropriate number of days to keep sailors under quarantine, as some who have initially tested negative have then developed symptoms and require a longer period of quarantine before going back on the ship.
Meanwhile, the ship has undergone cleaning. Sections of the ship has been isolated, and those continuously manned are cleaned twice — once by the offgoing crew, and again by the oncoming crew. The offgoing crew also cleans as they exit, and those coming on clean as they enter.