Submarine Squadron 16 Changes Command

Story Number: NNS160912-11Release Date: 9/12/2016 1:20:00 PM
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By Lt. Lily Hinz, Submarine Group 10 Public Affairs Officer

KINGS BAY, Ga. (NNS) -- Submarine Squadron 16 held a change-of-command ceremony at the chapel aboard Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay, Sept. 9, 2016.

Capt. Adam Palmer relieved Capt. John Spencer as the Submarine Squadron 16 commodore.

Rear Adm. (Ret.) Douglas McAneny, former commander of Submarine Force U. S. Pacific Fleet Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, was the guest speaker for the ceremony.

During his remarks, he praised Spencer for his outstanding reputation throughout the submarine force. "It was obvious from the beginning John was destined for great success," said McAneny. "[The submarine force's] technical competence is legendary-you have Admiral Rickover to thank for that. But as I often told my staff, smarts and technical competence are entry-level criteria. To be a success in our business you must also have the skills John Spencer has in spades."

Spencer, a native of Fairborn, Ohio, credited the humble service of the Sailors aboard the two guided- missile submarines of Squadron 16.

"The men and women assigned to the Florida and Georgia have been quietly and effectively fighting for the duration of my tour at squadron sixteen," Spencer said. "To these men and women I have the utmost respect and offer that though your efforts are deeper in the background and not necessarily the main topic of conversation here in Kings Bay, they represent some, if not the most important, work ongoing today by U.S. Submarines."

Rear Adm. Randy Crites, Commander, Submarine Group 10, awarded Spencer with the Legion of Merit for his service as commodore and thanked Spencer for his great work. "While you were commodore, you oversaw seven mission periods for our SSGNs; ensured we met our SSGN global force management requirements; led the first enlisted women in submarines conversion of an Atlantic Fleet submarine; and did excellent work getting Maryland out of her refueling overhaul and coordinating her recommitment," Crites said.

Palmer took command of Submarine Squadron 16, which is responsible for the maintenance and operations of three Ohio-class guided missile submarines; USS Florida (SSBN 728), USS Georgia (SSBN 729) and USS Rhode Island (SSBN 740).

"This job, like all the others I have taken in the Navy, offers a fresh set of challenges and no guarantee of success. The guarantee is that I will be surrounded by a talented and motivated team," said Palmer.

Spencer will report to U.S. Strategic Command in Omaha, Nebraska for his new assignment.

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