Special operations leader Vice Admiral William McRaven dies

The US navy’s special operations commander has died in an accident at a base in California. Vice Admiral William McRaven’s death has been confirmed in a statement by the navy.

McRaven died on Thursday at a naval base in Coronado, north of San Diego, after falling off a boat and hitting his head, the navy said. No other details were provided, the navy said.

McRaven, 60, was a Medal of Honor recipient for his valour at the Battle of Fallujah in 2004 during the Iraq war.

The unit that was behind the raid that killed Osama bin Laden was formed by McRaven, who was chief of special operations during the first Gulf war. The commando unit received the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal and the Bronze Star Medal for their efforts in the raid.

McRaven was a revolutionary figure in special operations. He told officials after arriving at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, in 1994 that military and intelligence forces would need to merge to survive the new era of threats posed by terrorists. His special operations troops have since been deployed to Iraq, Afghanistan, Haiti, Kosovo, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Bosnia and Libya.

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