Story by Petty Officer 3rd Class Joseph E. Montemarano, Navy Public Affairs Support Element, Det. Northwest
OAK HARBOR, Wash. – The Yellow Jackets of Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ 138), held a change of command ceremony at Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, March 2.
Cmdr. Todd I. Ladwig, former VAQ-138 executive officer, assumed the position of commanding officer of the squadron after relieving Cmdr. Charles E. Dale of his duties.
“Today, I stand here thankful for the opportunity to lead such a talented, professional and dedicated group of Sailors,” said Dale. “It is time for me to bid farewell once again to the Yellow Jackets, but I couldn’t be happier being here.”
September 2016 marked the end of a six-month deployment to the Pacific Fleet area of responsibility for VAQ-138. Under Dale, the Yellow Jackets operated as a Naval Expeditionary Airborne Electronic Attack Squadron to deter enemies in the 7th Fleet area of operation. They participated in multiple exercises, training and learning from allied air forces
“It has been a privilege to be part of such a capable and professional group of men and women for the past 15 months, and it is my honor to continue serving alongside you,” said Ladwig. “Before long, our country will call upon us, and we will once again assume the watch and forward deploy to defend this great nation.”
As the commanding officer, Ladwig will be preparing VAQ-138 for a deployment back to the 7th Fleet area of operation in the future.