New Commander Takes the Helm of USS Shiloh

New Commander Takes the Helm of USS Shiloh

The Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Shiloh (CG 67) received a new commanding officer during a ceremony at the Fleet Activities Yokosuka Fleet Theater, June 12.

During the event, Capt. James T. Jones turned over command of the warship to Capt. Kurush F. Morris.

Rear Adm. Mike Montgomery, commander, Battle Force 7th Fleet, congratulated Jones and his crew for their accomplishments.

 “Jim, you leave behind a winning team,” said Montgomery. “I can say without a doubt that you have led the Shiloh and her crew to great successes with unfailing strength and wisdom. Kurush, welcome aboard. This job will challenge you, but I am confident you will find it one of the most rewarding jobs in the Navy.”

Jones expressed his gratitude to his crew for all of their perseverance.

 “To the wardroom, chief’s mess, and the crew of USS Shiloh, my warmest thanks for your hard work and dedication,” said Jones. “The cohesiveness of our ship is one of the prime reasons for our success.”

Jones, as commanding officer since August 2011, had led the Shiloh through several demanding and complex exercises and missions.

 “In total,” said Jones, “we have sailed 47,100 nautical miles and executed 142 special evolutions up to and including the largest and most intricate ship’s maintenance availability that the Yokosuka waterfront has ever attempted, and strengthened international cooperation by being the first U.S. Navy ship to visit the People’s Republic of China since 2009.”

Jones attributed his success as commanding officer to the outstanding performance and character of the men and women who served under him.

 “I am better for having known all of you, for having the chance to serve alongside you, and to be able to call myself your captain,” said Jones. “This is the best job I will ever have, and it is a bittersweet day today because I must say, ‘good bye.'”

For his final act as Shiloh’s commanding officer, Jones led the officers and crew in the Sailor’s Creed. Thereafter, he reminded them of a credo they had become very familiar with during Jones’ tenure.

When Jones said “Remember Shiloh, if you’re going to do it,” more than 300 Shiloh Sailors said back, “do it right!”

Morris previously served on the Joint Chiefs of Staff as division chief, J-39 special actions division. Jones’ next assignment will be in Washington, D.C. with the Chief of Naval Operations.

Shiloh, forward deployed to Yokosuka, is the Navy’s 21st Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser and reports to commander, Battle Force 7th Fleet.

Press release, June 13, 2013; Image: US Navy