Diving

Court-martial begins for Navy supervisor following 2 divers' deaths

Court-martial begins for Navy supervisor following 2 divers' deaths

The Navy divers knew it was a risky operation. The Aberdeen “super pond” was deep enough to hold a 14-story building. Its water was black and cold. And the bottom was a tangle of muck and debris.

An Army diver had died there a month earlier. And now, with some crucial equipment broken, James E. Reyher said Ryan Harris had to make the dive with scuba gear, and little margin for error.

Even for a quick “bounce” dive, scuba tanks would give them only about 11 minutes of air to go down 150 feet and get back up. It was only a training evaluation, but no Navy scuba dive had gone below 130 feet in years.

The two men were asked if they wanted to make the dive. They could say no....

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