Navy EOD Officer Dies During Training in Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii

aaron head

Lt. j.g. Aaron Fowler, 29, died during a training Wednesday, April 20, 2022. Photo courtesy of US Navy.

A junior Navy EOD officer died during explosive ordnance training at Marine Corps Base Hawaii in Kaneohe Bay on Wednesday, April 20.

Lt. j.g. Aaron Fowler, 29, died while participating in a training evolution with Marines at the Hawaii base. Fowler became unresponsive during the training and was pronounced dead at a hospital, the Navy said in a release. No other details of the incident were released by the Navy.

Navy EOD dies

A US Navy explosive ordnance disposal sailor and Republic of Singapore navy EOD sailor locate and identify a training mine during the Miata Exercise on Naval Base Guam, May 13, 2015. US Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Kori Melvin.

A U.S. Navy Explosive Ordnance Disposal sailor and Republic of Singapore Navy EOD Sailor locate and identify a training mine during the Miata Exercise on Naval Base Guam, May 13, 2015. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Kori Melvin

“Our deepest sympathies go out to Aaron’s family and friends, and we join them in remembering and mourning this brave warrior,” said Rear Adm. Joseph Diguardo Jr., commander, Navy Expeditionary Combat Command. “His decision to join this elite special operations community was a testament to the dedicated and selfless character he embodied and his legacy will endure in our ranks through those he inspired by his service.”

Fowler took a rarely traveled route to his position with EOD, enlisting in 2012, then attending the Naval Academy and commissioning in May 2018. He reported to Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit One in Point Loma near San Diego in January 2022.

Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit One, based in San Diego, supports the fleet and joint force by clearing explosive hazards to provide access to denied areas, securing the undersea domain for freedom of maneuver, building and fostering relationships with capable and trusted partners, and protecting the homeland.

EOD operators routinely deploy and operate with surface naval forces and both conventional ground combat and special operations forces from all branches.

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Matt White is a senior editor for Coffee or Die Magazine. He was a Pararescueman in the Air Force and the Alaska Air National Guard for eight years and has more than a decade of experience in daily and magazine journalism. He also teaches journalism at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
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