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USS Enterprise - Captain Owen Honors

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The USS Enterprise (CVN 65) was the first nuclear-powered aircraft carrier in the world.  In this photo, taken on 14 June 2004, she is seen underway in the Atlantic Ocean.

The Navy describes the Enterprise, as follows:

USS Enterprise (CVN 65), the world's first nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, commemorates a name which has been a continuing symbol of the great struggle to retain American liberty, justice and freedom since the first days of the American Revolutionary War.  She is the eighth ship of the Fleet to carry this illustrious name that is literally defined as boldness, energy, and invention in practical affairs.

The ships named Enterprise have fought in some of the greatest naval battles in the history of the United States.  These ships were manned by Sailors committed to victory under the harshest of conditions.

The Sailors onboard Enterprise are part of that proud tradition and heritage of the men and women who have gone before them and live up to their legacy with honor, courage and commitment.

Sometimes the Enterprise, like other carriers, are deployed for extended periods of time.  During one of those deployments (between 2006-2007), the ship's executive officer - Captain Owen Honors (depicted here, in an official Navy publication, as the Enterprise Commander) - made videotapes to entertain the crew. 

When the videos were publicly released, in January of 2011, Captain Honors (by then serving as Commanding Officer of the Enterprise) was permanently relieved of his duties on board the ship.

In making that announcement, the U.S. Fleet Forces Command issued the following statement:

NORFOLK (NNS) -- Adm. John C. Harvey Jr., Commander, United States Fleet Forces Command (USFFC), has permanently relieved Capt. Owen Honors of his duties as commanding officer of USS Enterprise (CVN 65) for demonstrating poor judgment while serving as executive officer of that ship.

"The responsibility of the commanding officer for his or her command is absolute.  While Capt. Honors' performance as commanding officer of USS Enterprise has been without incident, his profound lack of good judgment and professionalism while previously serving as executive officer on Enterprise calls into question his character and completely undermines his credibility to continue to serve effectively in command," said Harvey.

"The foundation of our success in the Navy lies in our ability to gain and hold the trust of our Sailors, including through personal example.  This responsibility is so important that it is written into Navy Regulations.  When confidence and trust are lost in those who lead, we fail.  After personally reviewing the videos created while serving as executive officer, I have lost confidence in Capt. Honors' ability to lead effectively, and he is being held accountable for poor judgment and the inappropriate actions demonstrated in the videos that were created while he served as executive officer on Enterprise," said Harvey.

"It is fact that as naval officers we are held to a higher standard.  Those in command must exemplify the Navy's core values of honor, courage and commitment, which we expect our Sailors to follow.  Our leaders must be above reproach and our Sailors deserve nothing less," said Harvey.

Capt. Dee Mewbourne will be permanently assigned as the commanding officer of Enterprise.  Mewbourne most recently commanded USS Dwight D. Eisenhower(CVN 69) and while in command he completed two successful combat deployments supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.  Mewbourne is currently serving as the chief of staff for Navy Cyber Forces and will assume command of Enterprise this afternoon.

"We will support and work with Capt. Mewbourne and the crew of Enterprise to keep them forward focused on their upcoming combat deployment.  This is a difficult situation but the men and women of Enterprise are outstanding Sailors who have completed a very challenging and comprehensive predeployment work-up period in a thoroughly professional manner.  They are well-trained, and I have full confidence in their readiness to execute all missions during their deployment," said Harvey.

The relief of Honors occurs as the investigation continues into the inappropriate videos that Honors made while serving as Enterprise's executive officer from 2006-2007.  The investigation will continue to look at all aspects of the production of the videos, to include the actions of other senior officers who knew of the videos and the actions they took in response.  Honors has been reassigned to administrative duties at Commander, Naval Air Force Atlantic.

Captain Honors is a former "Top Gun" pilot with "more than 3,400 flight hours, in 31 different types of aircraft, with more than 700 landings on 15 different carriers ... [and] has flown 85 combat missions in three different theaters."

Click on the image for a much larger view.


Media Credits

U.S. Navy photo, by Photographer's Mate Airman Rob Gaston, taken on 14 June 2004.  The description of the photo, on the Navy's website, is as follows:

 

The aircraft carrier USS Enterprise (CVN 65) underway in the Atlantic Ocean. Enterprise is one of seven aircraft carriers involved in Summer Pulse 2004. Summer Pulse 2004 is the simultaneous deployment of seven aircraft carrier strike groups (CSGs), demonstrating the ability of the Navy to provide credible combat power across the globe, in five theaters with other U.S., allied, and coalition military forces.  Summer Pulse is the Navy's first deployment under its new Fleet Response Plan (FRP).  The strike group will conduct a scheduled training exercise followed by overseas Pulse operations.

PD

 

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