By Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Maria I. Alvarez
SAN DIEGO, CA – The crew of Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Shoup (DDG 86), homeported at Naval Station Everett, conducted a change of command ceremony on the ship’s forecastle at Naval Base San Diego, Mar.16.
With a salute and a handshake, Cmdr. Ted W. Wiederholt relieved Cmdr. Jason E. Rogers as commanding officer of Shoup.
Rogers lead Shoup and her crew to success through Engineering Operation Certification (EOC), TYCOM Material Inspection, TYCOM Mid-Cycle Inspection, Exercise Pacific Dragon 2016, Rim of the Pacific Exercise 2016, Common Broadband Advanced Sonar System Exercise, Surface Warfare Advanced Tactics and Training and multiple maintenance availabilities.
Rogers took the podium one last time, thanked distinguished guests and visitors for their attendance and finally addressed the crew he served with for the past 16 months.
“I had a little one-on-one with God prior to taking Shoup and all I asked for was an energetic and willing crew,” said Rogers. ”He answered my prayers daily with the finest group of Sailors gathered around us here today. Over the past 16 months we led a war fighting renaissance onboard Shoup. November 15’ seems like yesterday to me. After assuming command I gathered the crew under a giant heated tent and I told them it was completely in their power to change their current condition. We set out on a new campaign of domain dominance. Though we encountered many challenges Shoup came out war fighting ready.”
The guest speaker for the ceremony was Captain Douglas Grossman, USN (RET).
“The men and women who go to sea on this ship are what give the ship life,” said Grossman. “The men and women who go to sea on this ship are the Shoup. The men and women who go to sea on this ship are the Navy’s legacy. This change of command ceremony is a time honored tradition to recognize the change in leadership, responsibility, authority and accountability from one commanding officer to the next. It’s as much for the crew as it is for the commanding officer.”
Rogers received the Meritorious Service Medal for his outstanding performance as Shoup’s commanding officer. He is credited for outstanding meritorious service as commanding officer of USS Shoup (DDG 86) from November 2015 to March 2017. Cmdr. Rogers consistently performed his demanding duties in a highly professional manner. Cmdr. Rogers’ insightful, steady and inspirational leadership enabled him to build and maintain a high standard of procedural compliance, formality and operational excellence. The success of his leadership was most evident during Shoup’s superb performance in exercises Pacific Dragon, Rim of the Pacific and Surface Warfare Advanced Tactical Training.
Rogers will report to Carrier Strike Group 11.
Wiederholt is an Iowa native and entered the Naval Service in 1998 after graduating from Iowa State University’s NROTC program. He holds a Master’s in Public Administration from Iowa State University and a Master’s in National Security and Strategic Studies from the Naval War College.
While addressing his new crew, Wiederholt stated “I’m thrilled and honored to be here this afternoon,” said Wiederholt. “I have many reasons to be thankful. The crew Shoup. Thank you for making this day possible. You are awesome. I cannot think of a finer crew to be a part of. I am excited to be back onboard and I look forward to serving with you. We have a busy year ahead but I have to tell you it is going to be a great ride.”
Widerholt will oversee Shoup through the Composite Training Exercise (COMPTUEX) and Joint Task Force Exercise (JTFX) and the upcoming 2017 deployment.
The change-of-command ceremony is a time-honored tradition that signifies the transfer of total responsibility, authority, and accountability from one individual to the other. Deeply rooted in the Navy’s history, this formal custom is unique to the armed forces and publicly emphasizes the distinct nature of command. Most importantly, it signals a new beginning and opportunity for even greater achievement.