'Gold Eagle' Begins First Chapter of Second Lifespan with New Captain

Story Number: NNS090707-13Release Date: 7/7/2009 3:54:00 PM
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By Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Kristan Robertson, USS Carl Vinson Public Affairs

NORFOLK, Va. (NNS) -- USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70) held a change of command ceremony July 7.

Capt. Bruce H. Lindsey assumed command of the aircraft carrier, currently in port at Naval Station (NAVSTA) Norfolk, from Capt. Walter E. Carter Jr.

"Today represents much more than a change of command," said Carter. "It also represents the rebirth of this magnificent aircraft carrier as Carl Vinson completes her once in a lifetime refueling complex overhaul (RCOH); she now begins the second half of her amazing 50-year life span."

Carter assumed command of Carl Vinson in October 2006 during the "Gold Eagle's" extensive RCOH period at Northrop Grumman Shipbuilding (NGSB) in Newport News. In June 2009, Carter was selected to the rank of rear admiral and will assume duties as commander of Joint Enabling Capabilities Command at U.S. Joint Forces Command (USJFCOM) in Suffolk, Va.

"A brand new crew has made it though the yard period and is ready to begin again," said Rear Adm. Richard J. O'Hanlon, commander, Naval Air Force Atlantic and former Carl Vinson executive officer, who served as guest speaker. He brought up many of Carl Vinson's accomplishments while having spent the last four years in the RCOH environment including being awarded the Navy League Admiral Vern Clark Safety Award in 2007, significant while in dry dock for the entire year.

The aircraft carrier has also flown the enlisted surface and aviation warfare specialty pennants for past two years. The Gold Anchor Retention Award was achieved in 2008 and the crew is well on the way to a second consecutive award despite the hard conditions of being in a shipyard, O'Hanlon explained.

Carl Vinson also won the large afloat category for Navy Community Service for 2006 and 2007.

"These accomplishments just don't happen," said O'Hanlon. "They are a result of hard work, dedication and a strong leadership team that has been cultivated and led by Captain Ted Carter... he approached this tour with a vision for the future that embraced our naval heritage."

Lindsey previously held position as the commanding officer of USS Dubuque (LPD 8) from 2007. Under his leadership, Dubuque earned the Golden Anchor Retention Award for the first time in eight years and the Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Ship-Helicopter Safety Award for two consecutive years.

"Carl Vinson," remarked Lindsey, "I am happy to be your shipmate and I look forward to helping you write the first chapter to the second half of this great warship's operational history."

"Let's get this warship back where she belongs; out to sea, doing the nation's bidding," Lindsey concluded.

For more news from USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70), visit www.navy.mil/local/cvn70/.

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