"The divers were able to locate some remains in those sealed compartments during their search today", Admiral Scott Swift said at a news conference in Singapore on Tuesday.
"One of his friends sent us a message, they'd seen the article about the USS McCain colliding with a tanker", she says.
Still missing are nine other personnel that include electronics and information technicians and communications electricians.
The discovery came when divers were sent down to search inside the USS John S McCain, now berthed at Singapore's Changi naval base.
A 1983 graduate of the Naval Academy has assumed command of the US 7th Fleet after military officials dismissed Vice Adm. Joseph Aucoin on Wednesday due to a loss of confidence in his ability to command.
Alnic MC, the merchant ship that left a gaping hole in the USA ship, is a Liberian-flagged 600-foot oil and chemical tanker. The sailors were said to be trapped in the ship's flooded compartments. While the chances of finding them alive are slim, the search for the other missing sailors continues. Noting the sequence, Swift said, "One tragedy like this is one too many".
"And that gives great cause for concern that there is something out there that we're not getting at", he said. The fifth sailor was transferred after ship arrived at port.