Vice Adm. Thomas S. Rowden, commander, Naval Surface Forces, returned to USS Boxer (LHD 4) on Feb. 9, to visit Sailors and assess the ship’s status as Boxer gets ready to finish its maintenance period and regain her operational certifications for the strike group and fleet commanders.
Rowden, and other members of his staff, were greeted by Capt. Martin L. Pompeo, Boxer’s commanding officer, Capt. Michael S. Ruth, Boxer’s executive officer and Capt. Keith G. Moore, commander, Amphibious Squadron (PHIBRON) 1.
The group toured Boxer’s hangar bay, flight deck and forward main machinery room. Rowden was briefed on the ship’s condition, and the remaining maintenance evolutions that must be completed before Boxer can get underway for sea trials.
When the floor was opened for questions, Lt. Cmdr. Bryan Breeden, Boxer’s Command Control Communications Computers Collaboration and Intelligence department head, asked Rowden to expand upon distributed lethality, a recent combat readiness initiative.
The evolution of requirements for defense on surface ships has, since the 30’s, revolved around protecting aircraft carriers, according to Rowden. Because of the high cost of this approach and concerns about its efficacy, more emphasis will be put on the offensive capabilities of the surface force.
This is Rowden’s second visit to Boxer during the planned maintenance availability (PMA) period.
Image: US Navy