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Submarine Squadron 3 Changes Command

Navy NewsStand

Story Number: NNS070919-12
Release Date: 9/19/2007 6:21:00 PM

By Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class (AW) Eric J. Cutright, Fleet Public Affairs Det. Hawaii

PEARL HARBOR (NNS) -- Commander, Submarine Squadron (COMSUBRON) 3, held a change of command ceremony Sept. 6 aboard Los Angeles-class attack submarine USS Minneapolis Saint Paul (SSN 708) at the Naval Station Pearl Harbor submarine piers.

Capt. Edward L. Takesuye relieved Capt. Joseph E. Tofalo.

Presiding over the change of command ceremony was Commander, Submarine Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet Rear Adm. Joe Walsh, who praised Tofalo on his visionary command leadership skills and command accomplishments during his two-year tenure as commander of COMSUBRON 3.

“[Commodores] must train their boats and their crews to be Naval combat ready forces, capable of winning the global war on terrorism, and any other armed conflict, while promoting peace and security here in the Pacific,” said Walsh. “We are and will remain a warfighting, sea-going service and Commodore Tofalo has done an outstanding job doing his part to support our Navy’s mission.”

Tofalo, who has been the commander of COMSUBRON 3 since September 2005, has prepared and certified six submarines for independent Western Pacific deployments, all of them on time and without any equipment casualties.

Tofalo also personally mentored 11 submarine commanding officers and oversaw the successful execution of three homeport shifts.

Under Tofalo’s leadership, USS Honolulu (SSN 718) completed its final deployment after completing two decades of service.

In his final remarks, Tofalo thanked his staff, submariner commanding officers and crews, his ombudsmen, and the families of sailors that worked together to create the synergy that helped make COMSUBRON 3 a successful command.

“As I look back on the past two years I am overwhelmed by one singular theme. Simply put, I love my job,” stated Tofalo in his final remarks to his colleagues in attendance.

Takesuye arrives from the Industrial College of the Armed Forces in Washington where he earned a master’s in National Resource Strategy.

His previous mission assignment was in Yokosuka, Japan, where he served as both Chief and Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations and Intelligence.

“It is my privilege and honor to follow a superb officer; my friend and colleague Capt. Joe Tofalo. Assuming the helm of Submarine Squadron 3 takes on special significance of meaning because of my admiration of its personal dedication and contributions to our nation, our Navy, our people and their families,” stated Takesuye.

COMSUBRON 3 is made up of the five Los Angeles-class submarines, Minneapolis Saint Paul, USS Olympia (SSN 717), USS Chicago (SSN 721), USS Key West (SSN 722) and USS Louisiana (SSN 724).

Their missions include Tomahawk strike, mine warfare, anti-submarine warfare, anti-surface warfare, special forces insertion and extraction, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, as well as combat search and rescue.

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