USS Columbus (SSN 762) held a change of command ceremony Aug. 26 at the submarine piers on Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam.
Cmdr. Albert Alarcon relieved Cmdr. David Youtt as commanding officer.
In command for more than two years, Youtt maintained his ship and crew to the highest level of combat readiness. During Youtt’s tenure in command of Columbus, more than 115 new submariners earned their warfare qualifications, or “dolphins,” the team executed more than 550 days at sea and steamed more than 115,000 nautical miles. Youtt deployed to the Western Pacific twice and conducted several missions vital to national security.
During the ceremony, Youtt was awarded a Legion of Merit for his successes in command of Columbus from September 2011 to August 2014.
As Alarcon assumed command of Columbus, he thanked Youtt for turning over a very capable ship and a highly loyal crew.
USS Columbus is the 51st Los Angeles-class submarine and the 12th improved version of this class, which includes a vertical launch system for Tomahawk cruise missiles and an improved hull design for under-ice operations. She completed a post-shipyard availability in June 1994 in Groton, Connecticut, after initial construction and shakedown operations. In September 1994, the ship conducted an inter-fleet transfer to Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, and joined the U.S. Pacific Fleet Submarine Force.