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Pentagon's Joint Chiefs In Quarantine After Coast Guard Officer Tests Positive

Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Mark Milley listens before a meeting with Secretary of Defense Mark Esper and Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz, at the Pentagon, Tuesday, Sept. 22, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
Army Gen. Mark Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, is among several top military officials who are quarantining at home. They attended meetings last week with Adm. Charles Ray, the vice commandant of the Coast Guard, who has tested positive for COVID-19.

Members of the Pentagon's Joint Chiefs of Staff are quarantining at home after Adm. Charles Ray, the vice commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard, tested positive for COVID-19, the military said Tuesday.

Ray is not a member of the Joint Chiefs, the nation's top military officers, but he was at Pentagon meetings last week with others who are.

"Out of an abundance of caution, all potential close contacts from these meetings are self-quarantining and have been tested this morning," Pentagon spokesman Jonathan Hoffman said in a statement. "No Pentagon contacts have exhibited symptoms and we have no additional positive tests to report at this time."

Army Gen. Mark Milley is the chairman of the Joint Chiefs, which also includes Air Force Gen. John Hyten, the vice chairman, as well as the heads of the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines and the National Guard.

The Pentagon statement did not say which members of the Joint Chiefs were in quarantine, but it is believed to be all of them except Gen. David Berger, the Marine commandant who was reportedly not at the meetings that Ray attended.

"There is no change to the operational readiness or mission capability of the U.S. Armed Forces," Hoffman added. "We are conducting additional contact tracing and taking appropriate precautions to protect the force and the mission."
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