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Destroyer squadron boss fired on deployment

Apr. 25, 2011 - 05:17PM   |   Last Updated: Apr. 25, 2011 - 05:17PM  |  
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SAN DIEGO — A senior officer deployed with the Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group operating in the Arabian Sea was fired Saturday while an investigation looks into allegations of an "inappropriate relationship," the Navy announced Monday.

Capt. Donald Hornbeck, commodore of San Diego-based Destroyer Squadron 1, was relieved by the Vinson strike group commander, Rear Adm. Samuel Perez, Navy officials said.

"There is an investigation into an allegation of an inappropriate relationship," Lt. Beth Teach, a 3rd Fleet spokeswoman, said Monday. The Navy provided no other details.

Hornbeck, who previously served as the destroyer squadron's deputy commodore, is being temporarily reassigned to 3rd Fleet in San Diego, Teach said.

Capt. John Steinberger, DESRON 1's deputy commodore, has temporarily assumed command of the squadron, whose ships are deployed in the Arabian Sea with the Vinson strike group.

Hornbeck is the ninth commander fired this year.

Hornbeck, who was commissioned in 1984, took command of DESRON 1 on Nov. 23.

He served as commander of the destroyer Benfold from 2003-05, during which the ship received several Battle "E" Efficiency awards, according to his official biography. His staff assignments included deputy chief of staff for fleet operations with Japan-based 7th Fleet, deputy assistant chief of staff for operations with Task Force 70, and branch head for global engagement planning with the OPNAV staff.

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