USS Lake Erie CO Relieved of Duties

The commanding officer of USS Lake Erie (CG 70) was relieved of his duties April 27, due to loss of confidence in his ability to command.

Capt. John Banigan was relieved by Rear Adm. Dee Mewbourne, commander of Carrier Strike Group 11. The decision was based on the findings of an investigation into poor command climate aboard Lake Erie, a guided-missile cruiser homeported in San Diego.

Banigan assumed command of the ship in May 2013. He has been temporarily assigned to the staff of Commander, Naval Surface Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet.

Capt. Douglas Kunzman, deputy commander of Destroyer Squadron 9, will temporarily assume command of Lake Erie pending assignment of a permanent relief.

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Image: US Navy