The U.S. Navy’s Blue Ridge-class command and control ship USS Mount Whitney (LCC 20) held a change of command ceremony in Gaeta, Italy, Jan. 25, 2018.
Capt. Kavon Hakimzadeh was relieved by Capt. G. Robert Aguilar as the commanding officer of USS Mount Whitney while Commander, U.S. 6th Fleet, Vice Adm. Christopher Grady presided over the ceremony and delivered remarks about Hakimzadeh’s time as commanding officer of Mount Whitney.
“Capt. Hakimzadeh has done an outstanding job taking care of the crew and the mission of Mount Whitney over the past 14 months,” said Grady. “I look forward to seeing Capt. Aguilar take care of the next year’s mission.”
Hakimzadeh thanked the crew for an outstanding tour aboard the ship and the milestones that they were able to accomplish together.
“I think you all know how much I appreciate what you have done,” said Hakimzadeh. “Now that you are transitioning back into an operational state, and you start receiving Capt. Aguilar’s charge in the coming days, I ask you, like I have many times in the last fourteen months to remember the original reason all of us in uniform serve, to serve a higher purpose, and you have all done that.”
Aguilar is looking forward to leading Mount Whitney’s crew through a vigorous and challenging schedule.
“I have been looking forward to this time with great anticipation,” said Aguilar. “The Mount Whitney team is going to do great things in support of our primary mission, support to the U.S. Naval Forces Europe and Africa and the U.S. 6th Fleet commander. We will stand proud and tall like our namesake, distinguishing ourselves in all manners of operation.”
USS Mount Whitney is currently conducting routine training in the region in support of U.S. national security interests in Europe and Asia. The ship recently completed a 10-month maintenance overhaul and upgrade to the shipboard computer network and command, control, communications, computers, cyber and intelligence (C4I) systems.
U.S. 6th Fleet, headquartered in Naples, Italy, conducts the full spectrum of joint and naval operations, often in concert with allied and interagency partners, in order to advance U.S. national interests and security and stability in Europe and Africa.
MC2 Michael Feddersen