A grieving Bay Area family is asking the U.S. Navy some tough questions.
Navy seaman Danyelle Luckey, of Pittsburg, was laid to rest with full military honors on Wednesday afternoon. She died aboard the USS Ronald Reagan earlier this month while it was stationed in Japan, and now, her parents are seeking answers about her untimely death.
"All I can do is cry," Danyelle Luckey's mother Annette said. "She is not coming back."
At a service at Memory Garden in Concord, Danyelle Luckey's father Derrick Luckey said: "I loaned my daughter to the United States when she left here." He said she went from "standing tall" to returning home "in a casket."
And even on the day the Luckeys said their final goodbyes to their child, the Navy did not keep its promise, they said. Officials promised to fly out fellow seamen who spent time with Danyelle Luckey in her final days, but rescinded their offer at the last minute.
"They told us that they weren't going to be able to come because the Navy wouldn't pay for it," Annette Luckey said.
Luckey reportedly died from sudden cardiac arrest on Oct. 10, but her parents are struggling to understand what could have caused that in a seemingly healthy 23-year-old. They said when they last saw their child, she was healthy and had no medical history of problems.
The Luckeys say Navy officials told them their daughter died more than two weeks ago, but haven't provided any more details. The navy is awaiting autopsy results, the Luckeys said, but those won’t be available for another 10 weeks.
The last time the Luckeys spoke with their daughter was Oct. 6, four days before her death. The day before that, she had been texting her mother that she felt ill. She went to the ship's medic, and personnel there told her she was just seasick.
A day later, Luckey felt the same and returned to the medic. Luckey told her mother that they had given her a flu shot.
"They tried to brush it off as being seasick, and she wasn’t seasick," Annette Luckey said. "If someone would have done something, my daughter would still be here today."
Annette Luckey said Navy officials have only said their daughter started feeling sick, went to rest in her bunk, and never woke up. But the Luckeys suspect something else contributed to Danyelle Luckey's death.
"She was dehydrated to the point where it was hard for the [coroner] to process her," Annette Luckey said.
Derrick and Annette Luckey described their daughter as a fun, generous girl who loved to hike. She also loved to do her makeup and dress up, they said.
"I will leave no stones unturned. I will find out what happened to my baby," Derrick Luckey said.