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    Ford’s first CO returns for Ford’s first deployment

    Rear Adm.

    Photo By Seaman Apprentice Tyrell Lovewine | Rear Adm. John Meier, commander, Naval Air Forces Atlantic, observes flight operations...... read more read more

    U.S. 6TH FLEET AREA OF RESPONSIBILITY

    11.11.2022

    Story by Petty Officer 3rd Class Adonica Munoz 

    USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78)       

    Rear Adm. John F. Meier, the first-in-class aircraft carrier USS Gerald R. Ford’s (CVN 78) first commanding officer and current commander of Naval Air Force Atlantic, visited Ford during the ship’s first deployment, Nov. 10-11, 2022.

    Meier met with Capt. Paul Lanzilotta, Ford’s current commanding officer, in the CO’s in port cabin before seeing Ford’s advanced weapons elevators in action, observing flight operations and speaking to the crew at an all hands call.

    “When I started here on Ford, about seven years ago, it was probably the hardest job I ever left in my life,” said Meier. “I put my heart and soul in Gerald R. Ford. I remember distinctly walking around this ship with a roll of blueprints, going into a space, rolling out the blue prints and trying to figure out exactly what the space was going to look like and what it was going to become. Now coming back six-and-a-half years later to see you all at sea, operating all aspects of the ship is truly impressive. I’m in awe to have the opportunity to be back here.”

    Meier served as precommissioned Ford’s first commanding officer from July 2013 to April 2016. Ford saw many milestones during Meier’s time as commanding officer.

    In the years since, Ford has undergone post-delivery tests and trials, full ship shock trials, planned incremental availability, and carrier qualifications, leading up to the ship’s first deployment.

    “Ford’s inaugural deployment represents a generational leap in our Navy’s capacity to project power on a global scale,” said Meier. “It is extraordinary to witness first-hand how our Sailors are using the advanced technology and capabilities inherent to the Ford-class alongside our allies and partners to not only shape Navy warfighting, but high-end warfare for decades to come.”

    The Gerald R. Ford Carrier Strike Group is deployed in the Atlantic Ocean, conducting exercise Silent Wolverine is a U.S.-led, combined training exercise that tests Ford-class aircraft carrier capabilities through integrated high-end naval warfare scenarios alongside participating allies in the Eastern Atlantic Ocean.

    For more information about the USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78), visit https://www.airlant.usff.navy.mil/cvn78/ and follow along on Facebook: @USSGeraldRFord, Instagram: @cvn78_grford, Twitter: @Warship_78, LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/uss-gerald-r-ford-cvn-78/ and DVIDS: www.dvids.net/CVN78

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    NEWS INFO

    Date Taken: 11.11.2022
    Date Posted: 11.14.2022 03:32
    Story ID: 433183
    Location: U.S. 6TH FLEET AREA OF RESPONSIBILITY
    Hometown: ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, MD, US
    Hometown: EXPORT, PA, US
    Hometown: NORFOLK, VA, US
    Hometown: UNITED STATES NAVAL ACADEMY, MD, US

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