Guam – The Governor of Pennsylvania, Tom Corbett, has ordered all U.S. and Pennsylvania flags at the state capital in Harrisburg and in Perry County Pennsylvania, to fly at half-staff in honor of a Navy diver who died on Guam two weeks ago.
20 year old Ryan M. Bennett was from Perry County. He was assigned to the sub tender the USS Frank Cable here on Guam. He died May 19 while snorkeling at Haputo beach.
The Navy has not yet released the official cause of death. Guam medical Examiner Dr. Aurilio Espinola told PNC News that the Navy provided him with a copy of their preliminary report which concluded that the cause of death was asphyxiation due to drowning. However Dr. Espinola said that the Navy had not reached a final conclusion and they have ordered more tests.
According to a report on PennLive, Bennett’s friend, Andrew Fernandez, was snorkeling with Bennett when he died.
Fernandez told Bennett’s family that they were snorkeling in the shallows off the beach, examining shells and fish, when Bennett suddenly stopped.
He thought Ryan was clearing his mask, but then he realized that Bennett was not moving and was unconscious. He pulled his friend to shore and tried to revive him, but could not. Fernandez says that Bennett’s face was puffy, his lips swollen as though his body were in allergic shock.
That lead bennett’s father to specualte that his son had been stung by a jellyfish.