Navy hospital ship enlisted leader removed from command

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) — The Navy says it removed a hospital ship’s senior enlisted leader after an alcohol-related incident in Panama.

Command Senior Chief Aurelio Ayala has been reassigned to Military Sealift Command in Norfolk, pending the completion of an investigation. Ayala was serving aboard the USNS Comfort, which is providing medical care and humanitarian assistance in 11 Latin American and Caribbean countries as part of Operation Continuing Promise.

The Navy has not specified what the alcohol-related incident entailed.

The Comfort is crewed by about 70 civil service mariners who operate the ship. Another 700 militarypersonnel work in the ship’s medical treatment facility. The Navy says there has been no impact on the Operation Continuing Promise deployment.

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