9 January 2022: We generally try to avoid "current news" here on Maritime Maunder, (with some exceptions like the Golden Ray story and one or two others), preferring to use historical articles which might be instructional for some of our readers. But this one is surely worthy of sharing in its immediacy. When you read the two stories, posted here via the U.S. Navy, it will become clear. And both in the same week!
Cmdr. Billie Farrell is about to take command of USS Constitution — Old Ironsides — the first woman to do so in the ship’s 224 years.
|CDR Billie Farrell|
From serving as executive officer on the Norfolk-based guided missile cruiser USS Vicksburg to command of the world’s oldest commissioned naval vessel marks a step into history.
Launched in 1797, the Constitution saw action against pirates in the Barbary Wars and in the War of 1812, where it won its Old Ironsides title as astonished sailors watched British cannonballs bounce off its wooden hull.
USS Constitution defended American interests at sea for decades after that, retiring in 1855 after serving in anti-slaving patrols with the Africa squadron.
|USS Constitution |
Old Ironsides captured or sank 33 enemy vessels, and was never defeated in battle.
Farrell called USS Constitution an “iconic warship that dates back to the roots of both our nation and our Navy,.”
She said she hopes the strengthen the warship’s legacy “by telling her story and connecting it to the rich heritage of the United States Navy and the warships serving in the fleet today.”
While Farrell will be Old Ironsides’ first female commanding officer, it was another woman officer, Lt. Cmdr. Claire V. Bloom, who as executive officer and led the warship’s historic 1997 sail, the first time it sailed under its own power since 1881.
Women now comprise more than a third of USS Constitution’s 80-strong ship’s company.
And now in additional news:
Bauernschmidt, who previously served as the Abraham Lincoln's executive officer from 2016 to 2019, took over command from Capt. Walt Slaughter during a ceremony last August, CBS 8 in San Diego reported.
|Capt Amy Bauernschmidt|
The carrier deployed Monday from Naval Air Station North Island as part of the Abraham Lincoln Carrier Strike Group.
|USS Lincoln Underway for deployment|
"There is no more humbling sense of responsibility than to know you are entrusted with the care of the people who have chosen to protect our nation," Bauernschmidt said, according to a Navy news release. "Thank you, Capt. Slaughter, for turning over the finest ship in the fleet."
Bauernschmidt previously served as the commanding officer of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron 70 and the amphibious transport dock San Diego.
Here at Maritime Maunder, we are impressed with the capabilities of these two senior officers and their achievements. And both attained their respective jobs in the same week! Bravo Zulu ladies!
Until next time.