The now fired captain of the U.S.S. Theodore Roosevelt has tested positive for COVID-19, the New York Times reported on Sunday. The New York Times cited two Naval Academy classmates of Crozier’s who are close to him and his family.
Captain Brett Crozier called attention to the plight on board of ship earlier in the week amid a massive spread of COVID-19 among sailors, which turned into a public spat between Naval leaders and Crozier. Crozier leaked a memo to a newspaper, which brought attention on the ship, which is docked in Guam.
The spat resulted in Crozier’s dismissal as the ship’s captain.
On Friday, Crozier left the ship with hundreds of sailors chanting “Captain Crozier,” as seen in a number of videos that have since gone viral.
The New York Times reported that Crozier began exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms on Thursday.
Secretary of Defense Mark Esper confirmed to CNN on Sunday that there have been 155 cases of COVID-19 on board the U.S.S. Theodore Roosevelt.
Crozier’s firing drew the support of President Donald Trump.
"The letter was a five-page letter from a captain, and the letter was all over the place. That's not appropriate,” Trump said. “I don't think that's appropriate. And these are tough people. These are tough, strong people. I thought it looked terrible, to be honest with you.”
The Navy claimed Crozier not following the proper chain of command as justification for his firing.
"I could reach no other conclusion than that Capt. Crozier had allowed the complexity of his challenge with the covid outbreak on his ship to overwhelm his ability to act professionally, when acting professionally was what was needed most at the time," Navy Secretary Thomas Modly. "It creates a panic, and it creates the perception that the Navy is not on the job, the government's not on the job, and it's just not true."