Destroyer Squadron 21 Holds Change of Command

PACIFIC OCEAN (NNS) -- Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 21 held a change of command ceremony while underway aboard aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74), May 10.

Capt. Murzban Morris relieved Capt. Henry Adams as commander, Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 21 during the ceremony.

Rear Adm. Michael A. Wettlaufer, commander, Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 3, was the guest speaker for the event, highlighted the hard work and dedication Adams demonstrated throughout his time as commodore of DESRON 21.

"Captain Adams is the finest example of what it means to be a dedicated naval officer," said Wettlaufer. "He has set the standard for warfighting, planning, execution, and mission accomplishment."

Adams has been the commander of DESRON 21 since August 2016.

During the ceremony, Wettlaufer highlighted Adams' exemplary performance as commodore of DESRON 21, which included maintenance periods, Fleet Synthetic Training-Mega (FST-M) 17-1, Fleet Synthetic Training-Joint (FST-J) 17-72, Submarine Command Course 17-3, Dawn Blitz Submarine Command Course 18-1, Surface Warfare Advanced Tactical Training (SWATT) and group sail.

"From the junior Sailors on the deckplates to the commanding officers on the destroyers, Henry Adams was a positive influence on all who served under him." said Wettlaufer.

Adams expressed his gratitude for the opportunity to lead the DESRON 21 team and thanked those who helped guide him during his tenure.

"It is bittersweet for me to leave DESRON 21, but I know that the staff and our ships will continue to excel in all of their missions as I pass the reins to Captain Morris," said Adams. "I am incredibly proud of the 'Rampant Lions' for all that they have accomplished in the time in which I have been lucky enough to be their commodore."

Morris took command of DESRON 21 following his previous assignment as its deputy commander.

"In the short time that I have spent at DESRON 21, I already know that I am working with the finest ships, Sailors, and officers that our Navy has," said Morris. "I am extremely excited and humbled at the prospect of leading this team through our upcoming deployment."

DESRON 21 consists of seven Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyers - USS Paul Hamilton (DDG 60), USS Milius (DDG 69) , USS Decatur (DDG 73), USS Chung-Hoon (DDG 93), USS Gridley (DDG 101), USS Stockdale (DDG 106) and USS Spruance (DDG 111), and over 1,500 Sailors.

DESRON 21 is currently embarked aboard John C. Stennis during group sail as part of the work-up cycle in preparation for a regularly-scheduled deployment to serve as the sea combat commander for CSG 3. As the sea combat commander, DESRON 21 is charged with protecting the strike group from surface and sub-surface threats.

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