ELYRIA, OH (WOIO) - U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown offered his condolences ahead of Monday's memorial service for Elyria native Gary Leo Rehm, Jr. Rehm was one of seven sailors killed in the tragic USS Fitzgerald collision off the coast of Japan in June.
"Mr. Rehm was a hero in every sense of the word. With only three months until retirement, initial reports say Mr. Rehm gave his life in order to save his fellow shipmates. Like so many servicemen and women, Mr. Rehm ran into danger when so many of us would run away. As the Elyria community mourns Mr. Rehm, Connie and I join Ohioans in extending our deepest sympathies to Mr. Rehm's family and friends, as well as the northeast Ohio community."
According to the US Navy, the USS Fitzgerald and a Philippine container ship collided while around 300 sailors were asleep.
Fire Controlman 1st Class Gary Leo Rehm, Jr., 37, was a graduate from Oberlin High School in 1998 and was supposed to retire from the Navy in three months. Rehm was in charge of operating and maintaining weapons direction systems.
A total of seven bodies were found inside the ship's flooded compartments. The other victims include:
- Gunner's Mate Seaman Dakota Kyle Rigsby, 19, from Palmyra, Va.
- Yeoman 3rd Class Shingo Alexander Douglass, 25, from San Diego, Calif.
- Sonar Technician 3rd Class Ngoc T Truong Huynh, 25, from Oakville, Conn.
- Gunner's Mate 2nd Class Noe Hernandez, 26, from Weslaco, Texas
- Fire Controlman 2nd Class Carlos Victor Ganzon Sibayan, 23, from Chula Vista, Calif.
- Personnel Specialist 1st Class Xavier Alec Martin, 24, from Halethorpe, Md.