YOKOSUKA, Japan (NNS) – Cmdr. Zachary King relieved Cmdr. Simon McKeon as commanding officer of the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Curtis Wilbur (DDG 54) on Naval Base Guam, Apra Harbor, July 26, 2018.
McKeon served as the commanding officer aboard Curtis Wilbur from January 2017 to July 2018, and will report to Joint Staff Joint Chiefs of Staff, Washington.
“The last three years of my time onboard have been the most challenging, but rewarding professionally and personally period of my naval career,” said McKeon. “The crew demonstrated incredible feats of resourcefulness and resiliency, without their support none of this would have been possible. I am proud of what we have achieved. I will miss all of my Sailors.”
McKeon led Curtis Wilbur through a new training cycle as the test platform, Resilient Shield 2018, MultiSail 2018, Ballistic Missile Defense Exercise, and 21 mission area certifications with high marks during his time as the ship’s commanding officer. Curtis Wilbur was also the Navy’s representative for the Shimoda Black Ship Festival and Commander, Fleet Activities Yokosuka’s Friendship Day.
Cmdr. King, from East Hampton, Connecticut, served previously as executive officer aboard Curtis Wilbur.
"As we soon sail over horizon we will enter a complex and volatile environment. The Curtis Wilbur and ships of Destroyer Squadron 15 have played a critical role in the stability and prosperity of the Pacific,” said King. “For 21 years, Curtis Wilbur has steamed to every corner of this region and beyond protecting and defending our country and supporting our allies, and it is our turn to do it again. I am honored and humbled to be standing before you today as Curtis Wilbur’s commanding officer. There is no finer team in the Navy."
Curtis Wilbur is forward-deployed to the U.S. 7th Fleet area of operations in support of security and stability in the Indo-Pacifc region.