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Commanding Officer  |  Executive Officer  |  Command Master Chief

Executive Officer


A native of Wilmington Ohio, Commander Merritt graduated from Ohio State University in 1997. He was designated as a Naval Aviator in March 1999 and has accumulated over 2800 flight hours in the H-60.

Commander Merritt’s previous aviation assignments have included HS-15 Quality Assurance Officer, HS-10 Fleet Replacement Squadron Instructor Pilot and Assistant Officer in Charge of the squadron’s second sea operations detachment, and HSC-9 Operations Officer. The Tridents of HSC-9 were the first East Coast squadron to transition from the SH-60F/HH-60H to the MH-60S, Block IIIB Armed Helicopter.

While assigned to these squadrons, Commander Merritt deployed onboard the USS GEORGE WASHINGTON, the USS THEODORE ROOSEVELT, the USS MOMSEN, and the USS CHUNG HOON in support of operations in the Gulf of Aden, the Arabian Gulf, and the Sulu Sea in the Philippines. Commander Merritt’s staff tours include Commander, Strike Force Training Atlantic as the assistant aviation operations officer for rotary wing and Commander, Navy Personnel Command as the rotary wing Shore Assignments Officer.

Most recently, Commander Merritt was assigned as the Executive Officer of the HSC-25 Island Knights in Guam, where he oversaw the first FDNF three helicopter Amphibious Readiness Group (ARG) deployment.

Commander Merritt’s awards and decorations include the Navy Commendation Medal (5), Navy Achievement Medal (2) and various unit and campaign ribbons.