MISAWA, Japan (NNS) -- Cmdr. Paul Peverly assumed command of Patrol Squadron (VP) 1 from Cmdr. Gregg Sleppy during a change of command ceremony at Naval Air Facility Misawa, May 1.
The VP-1 Screaming Eagles, homeported out of Naval Air Station Whidbey Island in Oak Harbor, Wash., are currently deployed to the northern Japan U.S. naval installation.
Sleppy had commanded the P-3 Orion squadron, along with its more than 300 Sailors, since May 2011. He said he is very satisfied with VP-1's accomplishments during his tour as commanding officer.
"I think what I am most proud of is what we have done as a team," said Sleppy. "The squadron is built up of many professionals who know their job, and they perform them very well. This allows me provide the basic guidance and do very little, while they do many great things.
"For me personally, it has been tremendous to come back to VP-1 for a third time and serve as the commanding officer of the squadron I started in. It has been a source of tremendous joy for me because this squadron is like home to me."
Sleppy also took time to thank VP-1s Sailors and family members who have made the squadron such a success.
"Your sacrifice and dedication to our mission and each other is what makes you the best our nation has to offer. You defend freedom against those who would deny it, while making the world a safer and better place for our children," said Sleppy. "I am deeply honored to have served with all of you and I want to personally thank you and your families for your many sacrifices as Screaming Eagles in support of our great nation."
Sleppy, originally from Penn Run, Pa, earned a Bachelors of Science in Mechanical Engineering in 1994 from the United States Naval Academy, where he graduated with honors. He then went on to receive his Naval Aviator Wings in June 1996.
Sleppy now transfers to the Air Test Evaluation Squadron out of Patuxent River, Md., where he will serve as the Operational Test Director for the P-8 Poseidon.
Peverly, who served as VP-1's executive officer under Sleppy, becomes the 69th commanding officer of the squadron. He said that he is looking forward to continuing the quality course that he and Sleppy established.
"My expectation for VP-1 is that we continue performing at a high level and have no loss in the transition to VP-8 as we finish out the deployment and return home," said Peverly, who originally hails from Kauai, Hawaii. "This is a high performing squadron and I've seen nothing but great things out of the Screaming Eagles. We will continue on as the best squadron in the P-3 Navy."
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