A Coast Guardsman killed by suspected smugglers in California had ties to Eastern Carolina; he used to be stationed in Emerald Isle.
The Coast Guard says Chief Petty Officer Terrell Horne III, 34, of Redondo Beach, California was killed Sunday. He'd been dispatched to investigate a boat that displayed some standard characteristics of smugglers near Santa Cruz Island. When Horne and his team approached the suspicious boat in a rigid-hull inflatable, the people on the boat "gunned its engine, maneuvered directly toward the Coast Guard inflatable, rammed it and fled," according to the Coast Guard.
The impact knocked Horne and another Coast Guardsman into the water. Both were quickly plucked from the sea. Horne had suffered a traumatic head injury and later died. The other Coast Guardsman was treated for minor injuries and released from the hospital.
Horne worked as an executive officer under the current chief at the Coast Guard station in Emerald Isle for about a year.