JOINT BASE PEARL HARBOR-HICKAM, Hawaii – A change of command ceremony was held aboard the Los Angeles-class fast-attack submarine USS Bremerton (SSN 698) at the submarine pier on Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Aug. 5.
Cmdr. Wesley Bringham, commanding officer of Bremerton, was relieved by Cmdr. Travis Zettel.
The ceremony's guest speaker, Capt. James P. Waters, praised Bringham for his successful performance while in command of Bremerton.
"I believe it is clear that he has proven himself through the trial by fire that is independent command at sea," said Waters. “Wes demonstrated a rare combination of traits which ensure that when the storms come, he sees the opportunities for success and relentlessly drives to achieve them.”
Bringham said he is proud of having had the opportunity to be in command of Bremerton and its accomplished Sailors.
“I will miss this crew,” said Bringham. “They are the embodiment of what is right with our country. You can look at them and know that everything will be alright.”
During the ceremony, Capt. Tim Rexrode, commander of Submarine Squadron One, presented Cmdr. Bringham with a Meritorious Service Medal for his service as commanding officer of Bremerton from July, 2013 until Aug. 2016.
Following his tour as Bremerton’s commanding officer, Bringham will report to Submarine Squadron One as Deputy Commander in Pearl Harbor.
As Zettel assumed command of Bremerton, he expressed his pride in becoming the boat’s 15th commanding officer and commended the crew of Bringham for his successful tour.
“Becoming the 15th commanding officer of the now 35 year old ‘American classic’ is a proud moment for me and my family,” said Zettel. “Cmdr. Bringham, you have done an outstanding job leading these men over the last three years. You have truly been an effective transformational leader and you have set the bar high for everyone to follow.”
USS Bremerton is named in honor of the city of Bremerton, Washington. Commissioned on Mar. 28, 1981. Bremerton is the 10th ship of the Los Angeles-class of nuclear attack submarines. The submarine is 362-feet long, displaces 6,900 tons, and can be armed with sophisticated Mark-48 torpedoes and Tomahawk cruise missiles.