The crew of the aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) conducted the ship’s eighth change of command ceremony Aug. 16.
Rear Adm. Herman Shelanski, commander of Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 10, presided over the ceremony in which Capt. S. Robert Roth relieved Capt. Dee L. Mewbourne in front of six former Truman commanding officers (CO), families, friends, shipmates, and members of the Truman Foundation, the Harry S. Truman Scholarship Foundation, and the St. Louis Navy League.
“Today is the culmination of [Mewbourne’s] third carrier commanding officer tour,” said Shelanski. “Sailors of the Truman met or exceeded every goal due to the leadership and efforts of [Mewbourne].”
Mewbourne, who is the former commanding officer of the aircraft carriers USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) and USS Enterprise (CVN 65), assumed command of Truman Nov. 11, 2011, after the sudden passing of Capt. Tushar Tembe during Truman’s docking planned incremental availability (DPIA) at Norfolk Naval Shipyard (NNSY).
“I never forgot the tragedy that brought me to Truman, nor my focused mission to bring her back to the fleet with her crew trained and ready to operate,” said Mewbourne. “This crew performed magnificently.”
During Mewbourne’s nine-month tour aboard Truman, the ship completed its DPIA, sea trials, carrier qualifications, and an ammunition onload.
Shelanski presented Mewbourne the Legion of Merit. Additionally, the Harry S. Truman Scholarship Foundation General Counsel Westbrook Murphy made Mewbourne an honorary member of the Truman scholar class of 2012.
Roth’s most recent duty assignment was as commanding officer of amphibious transport dock ship USS Cleveland (LPD 7). Roth also served as the commissioning executive officer of the aircraft carrier USS George H. W. Bush (CVN 77).
“As any captain knows, the ship is not much more than welded steel, it is the crew who transforms the vessel into a fighting warship,” said Roth. “The Sailors of Truman have devoted a portion of their lives to service, and I am humbled and honored to become their CO. I commit to being ready to defend United States interests across the globe.”
Naval Today Staff, August 19, 2012; Image: US Navy