SANTA RITA, Guam – Cmdr. Brian Turney relieved Cmdr. Lance Thompson as commanding officer of the Los Angeles-class fast attack submarine USS Chicago (SSN 721) during a ceremony on Naval Base Guam, May 12.
Capt. Jeffrey Grimes, commander, Submarine Squadron (SUBRON) 15 was the guest speaker for the ceremony. He congratulated Thompson and the crew of Chicago on a job well done.
“Lance and his crew have done an outstanding job, and I am incredibly proud of them,” said Grimes. “Chicago is at the tip of the spear. They are where it matters, when it matters, ready to answer the call at all times. I know they will continue to do great things with Brian in command.”
Chicago recently completed national tasking in the U.S. 7th Fleet area of responsibility, where the crew executed the Chief of Naval Operations’ Maritime Strategy supporting national security interests and maritime security operations. Under Thompson’s three-year command, Chicago successfully completed eight 7th Fleet operational periods, nine exercises, three theater anti-submarine warfare periods, five foreign port visits and ten foreign port stops for personnel. Chicago was also awarded the SUBRON 15 Battle “E” in both 2013 and 2014.
Grimes presented Thompson with a Legion of Merit.
“I’ve done some incredible things with this crew, and it is bittersweet to be leaving them,” said Thompson. “It’s hard to describe the bond between submariners to anyone who isn’t a part of the crew. The sense of family and togetherness makes us stronger and makes the Chicago crew the best in the Fleet. I’m leaving them in good hands, and I know they will continue to do great things after I leave today.”
Thompson, a native of Kewanee, Illinois, has been selected for promotion to captain and is scheduled to report to SUBRON 15 as their senior deputy commander.
Turney is looking forward to his tenure as Chicago’s new commanding officer.
“I am excited to serve as your commanding officer and become a part of the crew,” said Turney. “I know we will continue the professionalism and hard work I’ve already seen in my short time here and look forward to the adventures that lie ahead of us.”
Turney’s previous operational tours include serving as executive officer onboard USS Albany (SSN 753) and engineer officer on USS West Virginia (SBN 736) (Gold) and USS Buffalo (SSN 715), when it was homeported in Guam.
Chicago was commissioned September 27, 1986, and is the Navy’s 34th Los Angeles-class fast attack submarine. Measuring 360 feet long and displacing more than 6,900 tons, Chicago has a crew of approximately 140 Sailors. Chicago is capable of supporting various missions, including anti-submarine warfare, anti-surface ship warfare, strike warfare, and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance. Chicago is a member of SUBRON 15.
SUBRON 15 is located at Polaris Point, Naval Base Guam in Santa Rita, Guam, and consists of four Los Angeles-class attack submarines. The squadron staff is responsible for providing training, material and personnel readiness support to these commands. Also based out of Naval Base Guam are submarine tenders USS Frank Cable (AS 40) and USS Emory S. Land (AS 39). The submarines and tenders are maintained as part of the U.S. Navy's forward-deployed submarine force and are readily capable of meeting global operational requirements.