GROTON, CONN. — A Navy officer whose submarine crew was twice asked to stay out at sea longer during a recent deployment was praised Wednesday at a change of command ceremony for the Providence.
Navy Cmdr. Michael Quan turned command over to Cmdr. Anthony Grayson at the ceremony at the Naval Submarine Base.
The crew returned to Groton in March from its last deployment, which was extended by a month to seven months in the Mediterranean and Middle Eastern regions. The deployment was extended twice so the Providence could continue assigned missions.
“Being extended once is hard. Twice extended is just sort of lunatic hard. It’s crazy hard. And that is what the Providence did,” Rear Adm. Richard P. Breckenridge, director of the undersea warfare division, said in remarks reported by The Day of New London. He said the sub was leaving the Arabian Gulf when the crew was directed to turn around, and they later got a “bonus extension.”
Breckenridge commended the leadership style and command skill of Quan, who had led the submarine since April 2011.
Deployments for attack submarines like the Providence typically last six months. The Navy occasionally asks them to stay out longer, and the loss of the submarine Miami, which was destroyed by an arsonist in a Maine shipyard, is expected to add to the strains on the fleet.
Grayson served previously as executive assistant to the commander of the U.S. Naval Central Command in Bahrain.
The Providence was commissioned in 1985 and is the fifth Navy vessel to be named for the capital of Rhode Island.
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