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SPAWAR Pacific Holds Change of Command Ceremony

Navy NewsStand

Story Number: NNS071012-11
Release Date: 10/12/2007 9:59:00 AM

By Jesse Leon Guerrero, U.S. Naval Forces Marianas Public Affairs

DEDEDO, Guam (NNS) -- U.S. Space and Naval Warfare Systems (SPAWAR) Facility Pacific Guam held a change of charge ceremony Oct. 5.

After 38 months of service on Guam, Cmdr. David DeMille said his goodbyes to the many friends he made as officer in charge (OIC) of SPAWAR.

DeMille was relieved of duty by Lt. Cmdr. Derek Reeves at a ceremony held at Naval Computer and Telecommunications Station Guam’s gymnasium.

“I’m kind of torn [and] have a lot of different emotions going on right now,” said DeMille, who will head to Naval Network Warfare Command in Virginia. “I really enjoyed my time on Guam.”

Guest speaker, Capt. Frank Unetic, commander of Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center San Diego, praised DeMille for his leadership and initiative.

He presented the Meritorious Service Medal to DeMille for activities that include advancing FORCEnet capabilities, which is the Navy’s operational construct and architectural framework for networked warfare.

DeMille oversaw more than $30 million for critical combat systems, command, communications, computers, control, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance installations.

DeMille, who was SPAWAR’s 18th OIC, said the job was a privilege and honor to have.

“It’s been a great job, getting an opportunity to lead an exceptional group of people out here,” said DeMille. “As an engineering duty officer there are very few officers in charge of [commanding officer] billets for us to fill.”

With its team of more than two dozen civilian personnel, SPAWAR provides support in the form of engineering and installation services to submarines, visiting ships, shore commands and other afloat systems.

They have worked on extremely high frequency troubleshooting at Naval Computer and Telecommunications Station Guam and ONE-NET support for U.S. Naval Hospital Guam.

That kind of interaction with other commands is important to the Navy’s mission because it means the war fighter is better supported, DeMille explained.

“Occasionally if you aren’t coordinating with your brothers and sisters in the support arena, you can step on each other’s toes and that’s not in anybody’s interest,” said DeMille. “So we made a concerted effort to partner with everybody on the island and to make sure that we have complete visibility and transparency on what’s going on.”

DeMille said his advice to the incoming OIC is to enjoy the beach and boonie stomps and get to know the island’s people better.

“They’re very, very dedicated and if you’re not careful they’ll be working extra hours,” said DeMille of the people who worked for and with him. “And I felt it was my responsibility as a leader to help protect them and make sure they were taken care of to the best of our ability.”

Having enlisted in the Navy in 1989, Reeves has served onboard USS Lexington (AVT 16), USS Donald Cook (DDG 75), and with SPAWAR System Center Charleston Detachment Norfolk.

His most recent assignment was at NETWARCOM, where he started October 2005 until his arrival on Guam.

Reeves said he and his wife and two sons have already begun exploring the island, and he expects to continue improving SPAWAR’s relationship with its counterparts.

“Since getting to Guam, the staff has been really warm to us and really welcoming,” said Reeves. “The island’s beautiful and we really look forward to doing three lovely years in Guam.”

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