USS Oklahoma City nuclear submarine changes command

Cmdr. Thomas P. O’Donnell relieved Cmdr. Patrick Friedman as commanding officer of the Los Angeles-class fast attack submarine USS Oklahoma City (SSN 723) in a ceremony held at Naval Base Point Loma, August 12.

Guest speaker Capt. Brian Davies, commander, Submarine Squadron 11, praised Friedman and his crew for overcoming the challenges they faced together.

“Cmdr. Friedman consistently demonstrated exceptional performance,” said Davies. “He inspired and led the dedicated crew of Oklahoma City to excel during a challenging transition period as they essentially deployed from their homeport of Guam to undergo this maintenance period here in San Diego.”

Friedman, a native of Albany, Louisiana earned a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Louisiana State University and was commissioned in 1997 at Officer Candidate School (OCS) in Pensacola, Florida. His other sea tours include USS Helena (SSN 725), USS Cheyenne (SSN 773) and USS Pennsylvania (Blue) (SSBN 735). He also served as commanding officer of USS Columbia (SSN 771).

After O’Donnell assumed command of Oklahoma City, he described his excitement to work with his new crew.

O’Donnell earned a Bachelor of Science in Ocean Engineering from the United States Naval Academy in 2000 and holds a Master of Arts degree in National Security and Strategic Studies from the United States Naval War College.

His previous sea tours include USS Maryland (Gold) (SSBN 738), USS Virginia (SSN 774) and USS Providence (SSN 719).

USS Oklahoma City was commissioned on July 9, 1988. Measuring more than 360 feet long and displacing more than 6,300 tons, Oklahoma City has a crew of approximately 150 Sailors. Oklahoma City is capable of supporting various missions, including anti-submarine warfare, anti-surface ship warfare, strike warfare, and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance.

Oklahoma City is assigned to Commander, Submarine Squadron 15, but is currently in the dry dock Arco (ARDM 5), for an extensive docking availability.