KILLEEN, Texas (KWTX) A 2015 graduate of Shoemaker High School in Killeen who was among the 10 sailors who died in a collision between a U.S. Navy destroyer and an oil tanker was laid to rest Thursday in the Central Texas State Veterans Cemetery in Killeen.
Electronics Technician 3rd Class John Henry Hoagland III, 20, whose home of record was in Cleveland, north of Houston, was killed in the Aug. 21 collision between the USS John McCain and the tanker between Malaysia and Singapore, which left a gaping hole in the destroyer’s left rear hull and flooded adjacent compartments.
The service began at 10 a.m. and burial followed at the Central Texas State Veterans Cemetery.
Lt. John Bright of the Dallas-based U.S. Navy recruiting district was among the personnel who participated in the service.
“We're here to support one of our fallen. We want to make sure that he gets the full representation that he deserves for his service and so we're here just to make sure the family knows that we're here to support them in any way we can.”
“I just want to make sure that they know that we're here to support them however we can we want to be available to them whether we're here personally on the phone or through any other measure we just to make sure that they know that we are available to them to help any way we can.”
A second sailor from Texas, Interior Communications Electrician 1st Class Abraham Lopez, 39, of El Paso, was also among the dead.
He graduated from Irvin High School in El Paso and enlisted in the Navy in 1997
Hoagland and Lopez "represent the best Texas has to offer," Gov. Greg Abbott said in a statement in which he extended condolences to his family.
(Sam DeLeon contributed to this story)