By Chief Mass Communication Specialist Ahron Arendes,
Submarine Group 9 Public Affairs
BREMERTON, Wash. — USS Nebraska (SSBN 739) was presented the 2013 Omaha Trophy, by Commander, U.S. Strategic Command (USSTRATCOM) Adm. Cecil D. Haney, during a ceremony at the Puget Sound Navy Museum, Bremerton Wash., April 11.
The Omaha Trophy is awarded annually to USSTRATCOM units who demonstrate the highest standards of performance in the command’s mission areas, their role in global operations and the command’s continued emphasis on strategic deterrence.
The award categories are global operations, submarine ballistic missile, intercontinental ballistic missile and strategic aircraft operations. Selection is based on formal evaluations, meritorious achievement, safety and other factors, such as community involvement and humanitarian actions.
“[Your efforts] culminated in 100% strategic and navigational readiness, on three patrols, accumulating 250 underway days. That’s pretty remarkable,” said Adm. Cecil Haney, commander of USSSTRATCOM, to the Nebraska combined crew. “Both crews performed exceptionally well in all major inspections in that you participated, and the crew was graded in every area at or above standards. This is unmatched by any Pacific Fleet SSBN in the past two years… I commend you on just a stellar performance as we recognize 2013.”
This is the second time Nebraska has received the award.
During the past year, Nebraska won the 2013 Commander Submarine Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet Battle Efficiency Award (Battle “E”) and earned the Navigation/Operations Readiness Red and Green “N” in the Battle “E” competitive areas.
“I really appreciate the hard work of the crew and the support of our families,” said. Capt. Jeffrey Joseph, Nebraska commanding officer. “This wouldn’t be possible if both crews didn’t work together as a team, and that really is the key to Nebraska’s success. The Blue and Gold crews really had to work together, and were really committed to the mission more so than anything.”
The ship is currently undergoing a mid-life overhaul in Puget Sound Naval Shipyard in Bremerton.
The original Omaha trophy, created in 1971, was given by the citizens of Omaha, Neb. to Strategic Air Command (SAC) to be presented as an annual award to the command’s best air wing as a token of recognition and appreciation from the citizens of Omaha.
In 1992, following SAC’s transition to USSTRATCOM, the Strategic Command Consultation Committee, representing the citizens of Omaha, requested the award be given to the top ballistic missile unit and the top strategic aviation unit in order to reflect the current joint effort of the strategic deterrence mission. Since then the award has expanded to reflect USSTRATCOM’s changes in mission and organizational structure.