The Navy relieved the commanding officer of the Freedom-variant littoral combat ship Sioux City on Friday.
Cmdr. Bradford Tonder was relieved “due to a loss of confidence in his ability to perform his duties,” according to the service.
“Cmdr. Joseph Caldwell, commanding officer of USS Detroit (LCS 7) (Blue Crew), will be temporarily assigned as commanding officer,” the Navy said in a statement Friday. “Tonder will be temporarily reassigned to the staff of Naval Surface Squadron (CNSS) 14. There is no impact to the ship’s mission or schedule.”
Tonder served as the ship’s executive officer starting in June 2019 until he took over as commanding officer in December 2020.
No other details were provided.
The ship, which is based in Mayport, Fla., was commissioned in 2018 and wrapped up a deployment to the 4th Fleet area of operations in December. The ship and Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 22, Detachment 4 conducted counter-illicit drug trafficking missions in the Caribbean with embarked U.S. Coast Guard Tactical Law Enforcement Detachment 102 during the deployment.
“This team set out to make deployment great, and we succeeded,” Tonder said in a Navy news release in December. “We executed our mission, seizing or disrupting the flow of over $230M in narcotics. We trained and increased interoperability with our partner nations and normalized LCS capabilities by operating the ship as we do in our simulators.”
“USS Sioux City is an extremely capable platform, and our Sailors are the best in the Fleet,” Tinder said. “I could not be more proud of this ship and crew.”