BREMERTON, Wash. (NNS) -- Carrier Strike Group (CCSG) 3 received a new commander Sept. 12, in a change of command ceremony held aboard USS John C. Stennis.
Rear Adm. Mark Vance relieved Rear Adm. M. Stewart O'Bryan.
Vice Adm. Samuel Locklear III, commander, U.S. 3rd Fleet (C3F), spoke at the event, welcoming the new commander and expressing his confidence in the readiness of the strike group. Locklear praised O'Bryan for his job at the helm.
"Under your leadership and guidance, the strike group demonstrated a reliability and flexibility that our nation depends on to address the challenges around the world," said Locklear to O'Bryan. "You've been a key player in preparing our forces to go forward. As a result of your leadership, the strike group is more than ready for the challenges that lay ahead."
O'Bryan reflected on its accomplishments as he addressed the strike group staff.
"Overall I have to say that I am tremendously proud and grateful to have had the opportunity to serve with the world's greatest strike group," said O'Bryan. "All of you have my respect and gratitude. I can honestly think of no one else to turn the strike group reins over to than Admiral Vance. If you have to turn something over, you ought to turn it over to a friend."
Vance is reporting to CCSG 3 from his former assignment on the Chief of Naval Operations Staff as associate director, Assessment Division (N81D); however, this is not his first time aboard Stennis. He deployed with the ship as commanding officer, Fighter Squadron (VF) 11 September 1996 - December 1998.
As he took the podium, Vance thanked his warfare commanders, and with a grin on his face, he spoke about how happy he was to return to sea. He offered special thanks to his family for being there for him, "every day, so I can live my dream."
As commander, Carrier Strike Group 3, Vance has overall responsibility for all Sailors, ships and aircraft of the John C. Stennis Carrier Strike Group (JCSCSG), which includes the ships of Destroyer Squadron 21, aircraft of Carrier Air Wing 9 and USS Antietam (CG 54), which serves as air defense commander for JCSCSG.
O'Bryan will to report to Chief of Naval Operations Staff where he will be the director of Global Maritime Situational Awareness in Washington.
For more news from USS John C. Stennis, visit www.navy.mil/local/cvn74/.