Divers Recover Remains from Flooded Portion of Cole
By Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, Oct. 17, 2000 -- Navy divers have recovered the remains of six
sailors killed in the terrorist attack on the USS Cole in Aden, Yemen Oct. 12.
This leaves six sailors still missing.
Officials are working to identify the sailors and inform their families. The
divers continue a dangerous search inside the ship, said Pentagon spokesman Rear
Adm. Craig Quigley.
Four more sailors injured in the explosion have been reunited with family and
friends at Portsmouth (Va.) Naval Hospital. This leaves two sailors still in
Germany. "Their medical condition precludes transporting them, although the
intent is to move them as soon as possible," Quigley said.
The Cole remains stable and continues to provide its own electrical power,
officials said. Other U.S. ships are in Aden providing help to the stricken
vessel and the investigation into the attack. The frigate USS Hawes and
destroyer USS Donald Cook were the first U.S. vessels on the scene and
continue to provide logistic and security support.
In addition, the Tarawa Amphibious Ready Group arrived in Aden Oct. 17. The
group, composed of the assault ship USS Tarawa, amphibious transport
USS Duluth and dock landing ship USS Anchorage, will provide food,
lodging and medical aid to the U.S. teams in Aden to recover the Cole and
investigate the attack. The ships' helicopters will also provide
transportation for the Americans in Yemen. Quigley said FBI agents and
others living in hotels now would move to one of the ships "to reduce our
footprint in Aden."
Quigley said the FBI is working with Naval Criminal Investigation Service
agents, State Department officials and local law enforcement personnel to
identify the perpetrators. He said he would not release the findings of the
investigators, saying he did not want to give terrorists any view on the U.S.
The Navy has let a contract with a Norwegian firm that owns the Blue Marlin, a
heavy lift ship that will haul the Cole aboard and carry it piggyback to its
home port of Norfolk. The transport is six days away in the United Arab Emirate
of Dubai. Loading the Cole will take eight days, and the voyage home will take
another 25. The Cole crew will fly home once their ship is aboard the Blue
The Navy created a USS Cole Web site with the Blue Marlin story and
extensive links at www.chinfo.navy.mil/navpalib/news/news_stories/cole.html.