USS Dallas bows out

US Navy’s Los Angeles-class submarine USS Dallas (SSN 700) officially retired in a decommissioning ceremony in the controlled industrial area (CIA) at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard (PSNS) Bremerton, on April 4.

The decommissioning ceremony, a time-honored naval tradition, retires a ship from service through a variety of ceremonial observances, including the department heads’ final reports, the lowering of the ship’s commissioning pennant, and sailors walking off the ship for the final time.

The ceremony is held to honor the ship and all the sailors who have honorably served as the crew.

Cmdr. Brian Freck, deputy commodore, Submarine Squadron 19, was the guest speaker for the decommissioning and he put into context the famous ship’s place in history during her 38 years of service.

“We are here to say farewell to a work horse in the defense of our nation, USS Dallas,” said Freck. “To this day, Dallas is still the most famous submarine in the U.S. Navy, because she was the star of the best-selling novel, ‘The Hunt for Red October’. Although many of the real stories remain classified, there are other great stories, which she starred in, that are actually true. I can say that she superbly conducted countless missions of vital importance to the United States and our allies.”

Dallas carried out missions vital to national security, deployed 14 times, steamed over one million miles and visited over 30 countries. Dallas completed their most recent deployment November 22, 2016. During their final extended 7-month deployment to the US 5th and 6th Fleet Areas of Operation, the submarine traveled 37,000 nautical miles and made port calls to Brest, France, Al Hidd, Bahrain, and Duqm, Oman.

Dallas was the second ship of the United States Navy to be named for Dallas, Texas. The keel was laid by the Electric Boat Division of General Dynamics in Groton, Conn., October 9, 1976. The boat was launched April 28, 1979, and commissioned July 18, 1981.

Dallas received two Meritorious Unit Commendations, two Navy Unit Commendations and was awarded the Battle Efficiency “E” in 1986, 1991, 1992, 1993, 1999, 2000 and 2013.