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USS Columbus Returns from Western Pacific Deployment

Navy Newsstand

Story Number: NNS040430-01

Release Date: 4/30/2004 8:59:00 AM

By Journalist 3rd Class Corwin Colbert, Commander, Submarine Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet Public Affairs

PEARL HARBOR, Hawaii (NNS) -- USS Columbus (SSN 762) returned to its homeport of Pearl Harbor April 28, following a six-month deployment in the Western Pacific.

According to the commanding officer of Columbus, Cmdr. Michael Ryan, the crew performance during the deployment was extraordinary.

"The deployment was fantastic and the highlight of my career," he said.

"It is what we worked toward for over 18 months. The crew performed admirably throughout the deployment," said Ryan. "I cannot say enough about the crew and how they pulled together as a team. They performed better than I have seen them perform since I have been in command. They took the opportunity to make sure each mission was a smashing success, whether it was a port visit or an under way exercise. I have not been with a finer crew. If I had the chance, I would do it again," Ryan added.

Machinist's Mate 3rd Class Christopher Hahn agreed with Ryan about the success of the cruise and the overall upbeat mood of the crew.

"The cruise was pretty good. It was a lot of fun. We had a chance to see some good sights, even though we had a lot of work to do. The crew's morale was high. We stayed together as a team and finished the work we needed to finish. The way home was long because we still had some drills to do, but it wasn't bad," said Hahn.

Now that the crew is home safely, Ryan feels quality time for the crew is essential.

"We are going to take 30 days of stand down to relax. If Disneyland was close by, I would be going to Disneyland," Ryan said.

Columbus is a Los Angeles-class nuclear-powered attack submarine. As one of the most advanced undersea vessels in the world, the inherent characteristics of the submarine are stealth, endurance, agility and firepower.

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