EVERETT, Wash. (NNS) -- Aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72) held a change of command ceremony on board ship in Everett, Wash., Jan. 28.
At the ceremony, Capt. Patrick D. Hall was relieved by Capt. John D. Alexander as commanding officer of Abraham Lincoln.
Alexander, a native of Port Neches, Texas, is reporting to the Lincoln after serving a joint tour as executive assistant to the director of the Joint Staff and commanding the amphibious transport dock ship USS Juneau (LPD 10), forward deployed in Sasebo, Japan.
Alexander previously served as executive officer of USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) and as head of aviation commander assignments (PERS-431) at Navy Personnel Command.
Hall, who has served as commanding officer of the ship since June 2007, said his experience with the Lincoln and its crew members was one he will not soon forget.
"It's the attitude and work ethic of each and every one of our shipmates that makes the Lincoln the finest aircraft carrier in the fleet," said Hall. "I am glad to have served here with such a dedicated group of Sailors."
Alexander said he was proud to take command of the Lincoln and follow in Hall's footsteps.
"I am very humbled and excited to be on board the Lincoln," said Alexander. "The ship looks great, and the crew is highly motivated. I'm proud to take command of this extraordinary warship."
During his stint as commanding officer, Hall led the carrier through more than 60,000 miles of steaming for more than 213 days at sea, including a 2008 deployment in support of the Global War on Terror. Also under Hall's command, the ship successfully completed 16,104 aircraft launches and recoveries, 2,307 combat sorties, expended 255,963 pounds of ordnance, issued more than 24-million gallons of jet propellant (JP-5) and repaired approximately 7,000 aircraft components without any significant incidents and zero loss of life.
Most recently, Hall saw the ship through the completion of a nearly nine-month planned incremental availability in Puget Sound Naval Shipyard in Bremerton, Wash. During the availability, the ship underwent a nearly $350-million overhaul including a complete modification of Hangar Bay 1, replacing all four of the ship's propellers, remodeling the media department and training spaces with advanced technology, upgrading the ship's computer systems and modernizing the entire flight deck.
"By far, I think completing our shipyard period early is one of our biggest accomplishments," said Hall. "This achievement alone goes to show that when we work hard as a team toward a common goal, we are an unstoppable force."
In his formal remarks, Alexander congratulated the crew on their accomplishments and stressed the importance of staying focused on the ship's next hurdles of flight deck certification, an assessment by the Navy's Board of Inspection and Survey, and integrated training with an air wing, surface and subsurface combatants together as the Lincoln Strike Group.
For more news from USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72), visit www.navy.mil/local/cvn72/.