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    USS Preble Change of Command

    By LTJG Kathleen Meeds, Public Affairs Officer, USS Preble (DDG 88)

    SAN DIEGO – Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Preble (DDG 88) held a change of command ceremony on Preble Field at Liberty Station as Cmdr. John Baggett turned over the role of commanding officer to Cmdr. Peter Lesaca, Oct. 29.

    Family, friends, and a small portion of the crew were in attendance for the celebrated event.

    “It was an absolute honor to stand beside and serve with these amazing Intrepid Patriots,” said Baggett. “Their hard work, dedication, and combat mindedness will ensure that when PREBLE heads back out to the fight – she will be ready; and I have no doubt, that if called to action, these winners will sail home.”

    Baggett, a native of Harrison, New Jersey, took over as the executive officer aboard USS Preble in December 2018. During his time as executive officer, Baggett completed a successful U.S. 7th Fleet deployment and multiple underways and availabilities. He took command in July 2020 accordance with the Navy’s Fleet-up Program. As the commanding officer, Baggett successfully completed a homeport shift from Pearl Harbor to San Diego. Baggett led Preble through a strenuous depot modernization period and multiple certifications and evaluations in the maintenance and material management, damage control, and anti-terrorism warfare areas.

    Baggett leaves the ship to join U.S. 6th Fleet in Naples, Italy as the operations officer.

    During the ceremony, Baggett read his orders and transferred command to Lesaca, who read his orders, assumed responsibility of command, and addressed the audience as the new commanding officer of Preble.

    “I am honored to have the opportunity to continue to lead Sailors and to command a ship in the U.S. Navy,” said Lesaca. “I look forward to working with this fine crew to deliver a warship available for tasking.”
    Lesaca, born in the Philippines and raised in San Diego, assumed command of Preble after serving as the executive officer from February 2020 to August 2021. His previous sea assignments include USS Gonzales (DDG 66) and USS Laboon (DDG 58) as anti-submarine warfare officer, USS Harpers Ferry (LSD 49) as navigator, Destroyer Squadron 23 as the N6, USS Decatur (DDG 73) as weapons officer, and USS Chung-Hoon (DDG 93) as combat systems officer.

    Ashore, Lesaca served at Fleet Anti-Submarine Warfare Training Center in San Diego and U.S. Pacific Command (USPACOM). He is a graduate of the U.S. Naval War College and was a member of the college’s Halsey Alfa Advanced Research Group. Most recently, Lesaca serves as an anti-submarine warfare (ASW)/surface warfare (SUW) warfare tactics instructor assigned to Naval Surface and Mine Warfighting Development Center (SMWDC), Sea Combat Division.

    Commissioned in 2002, USS Preble is named in honor of Commodore Edward Preble, who was a United States naval officer who served in the Revolutionary War, the Quasi Wars, and First Barbary War. USS Preble is assigned to Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 23 and is homeported in San Diego.

    For more information on USS Preble, please visit:



    Date Taken: 10.29.2021
    Date Posted: 11.03.2021 18:45
    Story ID: 408640
    Location: SAN DIEGO, CA, US 
    Hometown: HARRISON, NJ, US
    Hometown: SAN DIEGO, CA, US

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