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NEWS | Nov. 2, 2015

USS Hampton Holds Change of Command

By Commander, Submarine Squadron 11 Public Affairs

SAN DIEGO (NNS) -- The Los Angeles-class fast-attack submarine USS Hampton (SSN 767) held a change of command ceremony at Naval Base Point Loma, Oct. 30.

Cmdr. Theron Davis relieved Cmdr. Lincoln Reifsteck as commanding officer.

Capt. Gene Doyle, commander, Submarine Squadron (CSS) 11, was the guest speaker at the ceremony and also presented Reifsteck with a Meritorious Service Medal.

"On every occasion over the past three years, Lincoln and his crew were called on to tackle the most challenging assignments, and each time they answered that call with resounding success," said Doyle. "Lincoln, on behalf of the Pacific Fleet submarine force and everyone gathered here today, I thank and congratulate you on a job well done! Your performance was outstanding, and you led your team well throughout your tenure."

Under Reifsteck's command, Hampton successfully deployed twice to the Western Pacific and once to the Arctic. The ship recently completed an extended deployment to the U.S. 7th Fleet area of responsibility, where the crew executed the Chief of Naval Operations' maritime strategy in support of national security interests and maritime security operations.

"It was a reward to come to work every day with dedicated professionals, to keep pushing harder and harder, to spend 60 percent of our last three years out at sea, and I'm certainly wearing this [award] for the ship," said Reifsteck. "I believe that the submarine force is our insurance policy. It's our insurance policy on the nation's strategy and on open seas and everything. It revolves around the submarine force because of our stealth and endurance, and because of professionals like you and me. So keep pushing your knowledge, your capability and your competence."

After officially relieving Reifsteck, Davis addressed his crew for the first time as commanding officer.

"You have the uncanny ability to fare through the toughest of times and remain ready and eager for the next adventure headed our way," he said. "I look forward to serving with each and every one of you, and to become acquainted with you and your families as we push forward as a cohesive team to prepare for war."

Davis enlisted in the Navy in 1985 and was selected for the Nuclear Enlisted Commissioning Program in 1993. He graduated summa cum laude from Auburn University in 1996 with a bachelor's degree in materials engineering and earned his commission from Officer Candidate School in Pensacola, Florida, Davis last served as executive officer at Naval Nuclear Power Training Command in Goose Creek, South Carolina.

Reifsteck earned a bachelor's degree in political science from the United States Naval Academy in 1995 and a Master of Business Administration from The George Washington University in 2002. He reported to Hampton in September 2012 as the submarine's ninth commanding officer, and is scheduled to report to Combined Task Force 74 in Japan in November.

Hampton was commissioned, Nov. 6, 1993. The ship is more than 360 feet long and displaces more than 6,900 tons. Hampton has a crew of approximately 140 Sailors and is capable of supporting various missions, including anti-submarine warfare, anti-surface ship warfare, strike warfare and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance.