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CNSP Change of Command Remarks

by Abridge
03 August 2020
Admira​l Aquilino, Admiral Brown, family, friends and most importantly the Surface Force Pacific team; thank you all so much for being here today during these interesting times. Admiral Aquilino, it’s great to be back in the Pacific Theater and even better to be returning as Commander, Surface Force Pacific.  
There are many people who deserve my thanks today but first and foremost I want to recognize VADM Brown for all he has done for our Navy and Sailors these past 35 years.  His determined leadership, vision and tenacity as head of the surface community these past thirty months leaves us with the strongest professional foundation our community has ever seen.  We are all incredibly proud of the strides we’ve taken under your leadership and will all build upon your work. On behalf of the surface community, I profoundly thank both you and your family for all you have done.
It seems like just yesterday I was the Chief of Staff here, you were running SWOS and we boasted if we were in charge here’s what the community would look like…you weren’t wrong and I’m going to miss you my friend.  Good luck to you and your family.
For the CNSP Staff, thanks for putting together a first class turnover week and change of command ceremony. You made things look normal during abnormal times. I’m really looking forward to working with the Team.
To the MCEE and our Chief of Staff, thanks for all the support and running the staff like an absolute pro.        
Finally, I’d like to thank my family for their support throughout my career.
For my children, thank you for being who you are; I couldn’t be prouder of you guys.  I love you guys and I’m looking forward to seeing all of you soon.   
To my wife, not a day goes by that I don’t remind myself how blessed I am to have you by my side. You remain the strongest bond in our family and we all know how lucky we are – particularly this Sailor.  I am looking forward to touching many more lives with you here at Surface Force Pacific.  
I, We, have all spoken at, or attended events such as this throughout our careers and I often wonder what people remember. Abraham Lincoln, on the battlefield at Gettysburg, spoke a few words on this topic that important for us all to remember.
He said, “the world will little note, nor long remember what we say here today, but it can never forget what [these men did here]. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced.” 
Today, our Navy, our ships and our Sailors are busier than they have ever been, and it’s a deep, demanding busy. A busy that requires fighting in the realm of an invisible enemy, as well as preparing to fight an adversary that competes as hard as we do. It is a busy that demands an unrelenting focus on the fundamentals of our profession – warfighting, operational readiness, and toughness – fundamentals we must refresh daily. 
It is a busy that demands vision, collaboration and an uncompromising commitment to standards that were borne out of our service’s storied combat legacy.
The quintessential Surface Warfare Officer, VADM John Bulkeley’s Medal of Honor citation reads:
“The remarkable achievement of LCDR Bulkeley's command in damaging or destroying a notable number of Japanese enemy planes, surface combatant and merchant ships, and in dispersing landing parties and land-based enemy forces during the 4 months and 8 days of operation without benefit of repairs, overhaul, or maintenance facilities for his squadron, is believed to be without precedent in this type of warfare. His dynamic forcefulness and daring in offensive action, his brilliantly planned and skillfully executed attacks, supplemented by a unique resourcefulness and ingenuity, characterize him as an outstanding leader of men and a gallant and intrepid seaman.”
All of us in the Surface Force must renew our commitment to embody the warrior traits reflected by VADM Bulkeley.

There’s unfinished work to do and we will get after with a renewed and relentless vigor.   We have the necessary ingredients: our ships and weapon systems are the best in the world, our repair capability remains without peer, our training is cutting edge and our Sailors reflect the very best of our nation’s character traits: accountability, confidence, integrity, ownership, professionalism, toughness, and most important fearlessness.  We are a privileged few to serve in our nation’s Navy and it is not only our job, but our mandate to ensure we remain the most professional, respected and deadly force ever to sail the world’s seas.  Thank you and I looked forward to serving alongside all of you.

Commander, Naval Surface Forces, U.S. Pacific Fleet, 2841 Rendova Rd. San Diego, CA 92155-5490
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Commander, Naval Surface Forces, U.S. Pacific Fleet, 2841 Rendova Rd. San Diego, CA 92155-5490

This is an official
U.S. Navy website

U.S. Pacific Fleet
2841 Rendova Rd
San Diego, CA

Public Affairs Officer

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