YOKOSUKA, Japan – Cmdr. Christopher Gahl relieved Cmdr. William Blodgett as Commanding Officer of the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Barry (DDG 52) during a change of command ceremony at Commander, Fleet Activities Yokosuka.
Cmdr. Blodgett assumed command of Barry in October 2018, after serving as the ship’s Executive Officer. His next assignment will be at Naval Surface and Mine Warfighting Development Center in San Diego, Ca.
“It has been my distinct honor and privilege to be your Commanding Officer,” said Cmdr. Blodgett during a speech to the crew. “Throughout the last 19 months, we sustained an unwavering commitment to excellence. We are the most tactically prepared and ready to fight ship in the forward deployed naval force. You are by far the best crew I have ever had the privilege to sail with. I would like to thank you all for your hard work, dedication, and support that made all our accomplishments possible. ”
During Cmdr. Blodgett’s tour, Barry operated at a high-paced operational tempo, conducting underway operations in the East China Sea, South China Sea, and Philippine Sea to include the Bi-lateral Advanced Warfighting Training (BAWT) exercise between the U.S. Navy and JMSDF, operating with the AMERICA ESG alongside allies and partners, supporting a free and open Indo-Pacific, as well as theater anti-submarine warfare, and ballistic missile defense. Additionally, Barry participated in a multitude of U.S. exercises throughout the 7th Fleet area of operations.
Barry’s new commanding officer, Cmdr. Chistopher Gahl, is a native of Bethesda, Maryland. He most recently served as executive officer onboard Barry.
Barry’s namesake honors Commodore John Barry, the Father of the American Navy, Revolutionary War hero, and first commissioned officer in the United States Navy. Barry is assigned to Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 15, the Navy’s largest forward-deployed DESRON and the U.S. 7th Fleet’s principal surface force.