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    Santa Fe Welcomes Their New Commanding Officer

    Santa Fe Welcomes Their New Commanding Officer

    Photo By Petty Officer 2nd Class Aaron Smith | 240216-N-SS900-1024 SAN DIEGO (Feb. 16, 2024) A change of command program is placed...... read more read more



    Story by Petty Officer 2nd Class Aaron Smith 

    Commander, Submarine Squadron 11

    SAN DIEGO – The Los Angeles-class submarine USS Santa Fe (SSN-763) welcomed its newest leader during a change-of-command ceremony at Naval Base Point Loma (NBPL), Feb. 16, 2024.

    Cmdr. Eric Knepper relieved Capt. Matt Pianetta as the commanding officer of Sante Fe in front of friends, family members, the crew and personnel assigned to Commander, Submarine Squadron (CSS) 11 as part of a ceremony on the pier at NBPL.

    Pianetta took command of Santa Fe in December 2020. Santa Fe completed a shipyard overhaul, a change of homeport through Panama Canal, and a successful Western Pacific deployment. Under his leadership, Santa Fe received the 2021 CSS-12 Engineering Readiness ‘E,’ 2022 CSS-11 Weapons Readiness ‘W,’ and 2023 CSS-11 Navigation Red and Green ‘N’ awards.

    “It was a very challenging assignment,” said Pianetta. “The number of different environments, different expectations, differing experience levels and multiple mission sets created a series of high consequence transitions that I am very proud to say the crew handled fantastically.”

    Pianetta is departing Santa Fe to be the senior squadron deputy at Commander, Submarine Squadron (CSS) 15 in Guam.

    Capt. Kenneth Douglas, CSS-11’s commander, thanked Pianetta for his leadership during his time in command.

    “He inspired and led the dedicated crew of Santa Fe to excel in every mission area,” said Douglas. “On behalf of the Pacific Fleet Submarine Force and everyone gathered here today, I thank you and congratulate you on a job well done.”

    Knepper began his speech as Santa Fe’s commanding officer to share his appreciation for the crew.

    “I am impressed by your enthusiasm and hard work that I am excited to join the Santa Fe family for our upcoming adventures,” said Knepper. “These past couple of years have been a series of transitions; what was accomplished was no easy task.”

    Upon assuming command, Knepper thanked Pianetta for his dedication to the boat and crew and shared his goals for the future of Santa Fe.

    “I am humbled and honored to relieve you, taking this warship and its fine crew to sea,” said Knepper. “Good luck on your next assignment, I’m sure the crew and I will be seeing you again.”

    Santa Fe operates under CSS-11, which consists of four Los Angeles-class fast-attack submarines, a floating dry-dock, ARCO (ARDM 5), and Undersea Rescue Command. The squadron staff is responsible for providing training, material and personnel readiness support for all units.



    Date Taken: 02.16.2024
    Date Posted: 02.16.2024 17:53
    Story ID: 464156
    Location: SAN DIEGO, CA, US

    Web Views: 487
    Downloads: 0