‘He loved his fellow shipmates’: Submariner dies in motorcycle crash


To hear his family tell it, Information Systems Technician (Submarines) 1st Class Trevor D. Sauers loved his job and being a submariner aboard the Washington state-based ballistic missile submarine Pennsylvania.

But that devotion to the service and his shipmates meant he didn’t talk much about his work, his mother, Jenny Moore Sauers, told Navy Times this week.

“He took his security clearance very, very seriously,” she said. “He valued that, and it was not something he was going to jeopardize by having a conversation with his mother.”

Sauers died July 3 in a motorcycle crash in Silverdale, Washington, near his sub’s base.

The 29-year-old was riding a 2019 Kawasaki Ninja motorcycle on Silverdale Way at about 9:45 p.m. when he struck the rear of a car, according to the Kitsap County Sheriff’s Office. He died at the scene.

A Texas native, Sauers reported to the Pennsylvania’s blue crew in April 2017, according to his service record.

“We send our sincerest condolences and prayers out to Petty Officer Sauers’ family,” Lt. Mack Jamieson, a spokesman for Submarine Group 9, said in an email. “We will remember Petty Officer Sauers for his contributions and service. He will be missed.”

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A farewell gathering will be held from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. July 25 at Rill’s Life Tribute Center, 1151 Mitchell Ave., Port Orchard, Washington.

Sauers is at least the sixth sailor to die in a motorcycle accident this fiscal year, which began Oct. 1, according to Navy data.

Whether alcohol played a role in the collision remains unclear as the results of toxicology tests are pending, according to the sheriff’s office.

Before his death, Sauers had come to love being stationed in Washington state, his mother said.

“He was as happy as he could be,” she recalled. “I was very happy he was happy.”

Sauers was kind, generous and very intelligent, Jenny Moore Sauers said.

“Every picture I had of him as a kid, if there was more than one kid in the picture with Trevor, he was hugging them,” she said. “If he was successful, he wanted you to come with him.”

Sauers grew up in Garland, Texas, and his late grandfather’s military service inspired him to enlist, Jenny Moore Sauers said.

“He loved it,” she said. “It was his niche and he was so happy to be assigned to a submarine. I’m totally claustrophobic and could never understand how my son could be in a submarine.”

Trevor “never looked back” after he joined the Navy, and was an adventurer who loved the outdoors, his father, Stanley Sauers, said this week.

“He loved … being in cyber security and he loved his fellow shipmates,” Stanley Sauers said, adding that plans are in the works to have his son’s remains buried at sea from the Pennsylvania.

Stanley Sauers said he spoke to his son six hours before his death.

“Our last words were that ‘I love you,‘ ” he recalled. “That I got to talk to him was really great. Is there really any comfort in anything in a situation like this? Can comfort really be found? I don’t know yet.”


Geoff is a senior staff reporter for Military Times, focusing on the Navy. He covered Iraq and Afghanistan extensively and was most recently a reporter at the Chicago Tribune. He welcomes any and all kinds of tips at geoffz@militarytimes.com.

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