Military News

Monday, February 14, 2011

USS New York Holds First Change Of Command Ceremony

By MC1 COREY LEWIS, USS New York Public Affairs

NORFOLK ,Va. (NNS) -- The crew of USS New York (LPD 21) celebrated the ship's first change of command Feb. 11.

Cmdr. William Herrmann relieved Cmdr. Curt Jones as Commanding Officer of the USS New York at a change of command ceremony held aboard the ship at BAE Systems Shipyard on Friday.

The landing platform dock, built with 7.5 tons of World Trade Center steel, recently passed a vigorous Final Contract Trials certification by the Board of Inspection and Survey.

"I could not have asked for a better group of friends or shipmates," said Jones in an emotional goodbye to the crew. "It has been an honor to serve with you."

The change will not take much getting used to for the crew. Herrmann most recently served as New York's Executive Officer before fleeting up to his new job. He has also served as Executive Officer of the USS Whidbey Island.

In attendance were former Secretary of the Navy Gordon England, his wife Dotty, who is also the ship's sponsor, and Admiral James A. Winnefeld Jr., Commander Northern Command. Winnefeld, the event's guest speaker, was the Commanding Officer of USS Cleveland (LPD 7) in the late 1990s while Jones served as the ship's chief engineer.

"Bringing a new ship to life is like owning a brand new house," said Winnefeld. "It's exciting and painful all at the same time. And this being a new class makes it all the more interesting."

Jones was Captain of the ship when she was commissioned in New York City in November of 2009. His next tour will be in Washington, D.C.

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