A soldier who drowned Friday in Kailua Bay has been identified as Pvt. Saije Anthony Daniel, 21, Schofield Barracks authorities said today.
Daniel, of Richmond, Va., joined the Army in August as a field artilleryman. He had been assigned to the 25th Infantry Division at Schofield Barracks since Feb. 20.
The Honolulu Medical Examiner’s Office has yet to release the cause of death; however, the 25th Infantry Division reported he drowned.
Witnesses said a man, later identified as Daniel, had gone into the ocean with two women in Kailua Bay at about 5:30 p.m. Friday. They were spotted in distress.
A couple visiting from California grabbed surfboards and rescued the two women about 40 yards offshore. They tried to save Daniel, but he was lost beneath the waves.
Firefighters responded and searched for him Friday and Saturday to no avail.
On Sunday morning Honolulu firefighters responded to a report of a body that washed ashore on the north end of Kailua Beach.
The body matched the description of Daniel.
“In the Army, we consider our greatest asset to be our people. Our soldiers are what make our Army strong,” said Lt. Col. Scott C. Sinclair, 3-7 Field Artillery Regiment, 3rd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division, in a statement. “The loss of a soldier is felt deeply in our Army and in our country. With the passing of Private Saije Daniel, we lost not only a teammate but a valued member of the 25th Infantry Division.”
Daniel’s awards and decorations include the National Defense Service Medal Ribbon.