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Mystery relief of carrier’s command master chief revealed

Although the Navy fired the flattop Theodore Roosevelt’s command master chief in September — weeks after an internal probe by Carrier Strike Group 9 wrapped up — the sea service didn’t announce the relief until Thursday after Navy Times started asking questions about it.

Officials didn’t deny that former Big Stick skipper Capt. Carlos “Los” Sardiello removed Command Master Chief Andrew Victor Frederick as his senior enlisted adviser on or about Sept. 10 and transferred him to Naval Air Station North Island-based Naval Air Forces.

Officials told Navy Times that Frederick has not been formally detached from the carrier’s crew, but he’s been temporarily replaced on the warship by the flattop’s operations department leading chief petty officer Master Chief Michael Hackley.

“CMC Frederick was relieved due to a loss of confidence in his ability to carry out his duties as command master chief,” said Naval Air Forces spokesman Cmdr. Ron Flanders during a telephone interview.

Then-Command Master Chief Andrew Frederick, right, converses with sailors during a dress whites inspection on board the aircraft carrier Theodore Roosevelt on April 29. (Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Olympia O. McCoy/Navy)
Then-Command Master Chief Andrew Frederick, right, converses with sailors during a dress whites inspection on board the aircraft carrier Theodore Roosevelt on April 29. (Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Olympia O. McCoy/Navy)

Messages left at telephone numbers listed under Frederick’s name were not returned.

Officials declined to elaborate on why Frederick was fired so Navy Times requested a copy of the command investigation that triggered his removal.

His relief came to light because sailors on board the carrier wanted to know why Navy Times never reported on it.

Navy Times asked Pentagon officials why a notification for Frederick’s firing was never sent in September. They indicated that the policy for relief notifications hasn’t changed but the practice behind it has.

Navy leaders said they want to offer more transparency when a flag officer or a commander is relieved but they’ve become more selective about releasing information in the wake of a fired executive officer or command master chief.

“We didn’t send anything out on this one,” explained Navy spokesman Cmdr. Clay Doss in an email to Navy Times. " I think you’ll see CO/Flag Officer relief announcements as press releases more frequently/consistently than the past few years, but not necessarily other triad members."

Frederick enlisted in the Navy out of Florida in early 1991 and was selected for command master chief in 2015, according to military records released to Navy Times on Thursday.

He served at sea on board the amphibious warships Fort Fisher, Saipan and Nassau and the aircraft carrier George Washington before reporting to its sister flattop Theodore Roosevelt on Sept. 22, 2017.

His first stint as command master chief came with the Chargers of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 14.

His decorations include the Enlisted Surface Warfare and Aviation Warfare Specialist pins, a Meritorious Service Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation and Achievement Medals and two Southwest Asia Service Medals, according to the records provided Thursday by the Navy.

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