The future USS MONTANA’s officers and crew continue to make all of us in Big Sky Country proud as they train and prepare for sea trials.
From MONTANA’s pier-side completion location at Huntington Ingalls Newport News Shipbuilding in Virginia, commanding officer CAPT Mike Delaney reports:
“MONTANA’s reactor core is now certified!
“Following an extensive month-long test program, the crew of MONTANA has validated the reactor and engineroom are ready to support underway testing. This marks one of the last remaining milestones prior to initial at-sea testing and is the culmination of over a year of preparation for this unique and complex testing.
“In the coming days, MONTANA will be placed “In Service”. This milestone will mark when the crew officially takes over all damage control and force protection responsibilities from the shipyard. It also marks the point at which the crew will officially be able to sleep onboard while on duty and serve meals in the galley. The MONTANA is planning a celebratory first meal to commemorate this event.”
It is fitting that, with his report on the major reactor and in-service milestones by CAPT Delaney, we let USS Montana Committee members and all those interested in our namesake warship and her crew know that this exceptional Navy officer and leader is moving to a new assignment as part of his normal career progression, to be followed as CO by Commander Jon Quimby.
We will miss Mike greatly, and we celebrate all he, his leadership team and the crew have accomplished, both collectively and individually during SSN 794’s construction and preparation to sail in defense of our nation. We also welcome CDR Quimby. We look forward to working with him as he leads the MONTANA and her crew through sea trials toward her commissioning into the fleet.
In the next few days we’ll have more to say about the change of command and these two fine Navy officers.