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US naval commander in Middle East found dead in Bahrain home

Vice Adm. Scott Stearney, commander of U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, U.S. 5th Fleet and Combined Maritime Forces, speaks on the 1MC shipboard intercom to welcome the crew of the guided-missile destroyer USS Jason Dunham (DDG 109) to Manama, Bahrain (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Jonathan Clay/Released)

WASHINGTON (AP) — The commander of U.S. Naval Forces Central Command and the U.S. Fifth Fleet has been found dead in his residence in Bahrain.

Chief of Naval Operations Adm. John Richardson says Vice Adm. Scott Stearney was found dead Saturday.

Richardson says the Naval Criminal Investigative Service and the Bahraini Ministry of Interior are investigating the death, but foul play is not suspected.

Rear Adm. Paul Schlise, the deputy commander of the Fifth Fleet, has taken over Stearney's duties.

Richardson described Stearney as a decorated naval warrior, a devoted husband and father, and a good friend.

The Fifth Fleet includes the Arabian Gulf, the Gulf of Oman, the Gulf of Aden, the Red Sea and the Arabian Sea.

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