Captain Wesley A. Smith, who was the commanding officer of the USS Philippine Sea, a guided-missile cruiser, died in Jacksonville, Florida, Saturday following a house fire.
Authorities responded to the blaze at his home around 8 p.m. Smith, who was 50-years-old, was found unresponsive and transported to a naval hospital where he was later pronounced dead. The exact cause of death is not yet known.
Smith, who is survived by his wife and two children, had been in the Navy for more than two decades and became the commanding officer of the USS Philippine Sea in 2013. Commander Nathan Rowan had taken temporary command of the ship.
[ First Coast News ]