Carrier Strike Group 2 Holds Change of Command

Story Number: NNS130301-19Release Date: 3/1/2013 2:54:00 PM
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By Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Samantha Thorpe, USS George H.W. Bush Public Affairs

NORFOLK (NNS) -- Rear Adm. John C. Aquilino relieved Rear Adm. Gregory M. Nosal as commander, Carrier Strike Group 2 (CSG-2) during a change of command ceremony on board the aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush (CVN 77), March 1.

Nosal, who assumed command of CSG-2 Jan. 12, 2012, led the Strike Group throughout the readiness cycle including orchestration of the War of 1812 Bicentennial Commemoration (COMAWAR 1812).

Admiral Nosal promulgated the Navy's key messages while working with coalition nations, interagency partners, federal, state, and city governments in eight American and four Canadian cities which allowed the Strike Group to reconnect the American people to the history, heritage, and capabilities of the United States Navy.

"The number one rule of success is to surround yourself with great people," said Nosal. "I consider myself fortunate to have been a part of an organization with so many great Sailors. It has been an honor to serve in the George H.W. Bush Carrier Strike Group."

Adm. William E. "Bill" Gortney, commander, U.S. Fleet Forces Command, was the guest speaker during the change of command ceremony.

Nosal will soon travel to Washington, D.C. to assume command as Deputy Director for Joint Staff, J3.

A native of Huntington, N.Y., Aquilino assumed command of CSG-2 following his first flag assignment as the director of Strategy and Policy, U.S. Joint Forces Command.

Aquilino's fleet assignments include the Ghostriders of Fighter Squadron 142 and the Black Aces of Fighter Squadron 41. He commanded both the World Famous Red Rippers of Fighter Squadron 11 and Carrier Air Wing 2. He has made several extended deployments in support of Operation Deny Flight, Deliberate Force, Southern Watch, Noble Eagle, Enduring Freedom, and Iraqi Freedom.

Aquilino's shore duty assignments include duties as an adversary instructor pilot flying the A-4, F-5 and F-16N aircraft for the Challengers of Fighter Squadron 43; operations officer of Strike Weapons and Tactics School, Atlantic; aide to the Vice Chief of Naval Operations; special assistant for Weapons Systems and Advanced Development in the Office of Legislative Affairs for the Secretary of Defense; director of Air Wing Readiness and Training, for Commander, Naval Air Forces, Atlantic Fleet; and, as the executive assistant to the Commander, U.S. Fleet Forces Command.

USS George H.W. Bush (CVN 77) is currently completing training qualifications in port.

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