Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Pacific held its change of command ceremony on board Naval Air Station North Island Thursday, Feb. 28. With a large American Flag as the back drop and surrounded by static displays of the helicopters and unmanned systems flown by HSC Wing, the time honored tradition of the change of command ceremony offered opportunities to recognize the great work done by CAPT Kevin Kennedy and welcome the new incoming commander CAPT Ryan Carron.
The guest speaker and presiding officer, Rear Admiral Scott Jones, Commander Naval Air Force Reserve, shared insights into the importance of the Navy helicopter community and the great achievements of Commodore Kennedy. “Commodore Kennedy is a living example of the best we have in the United States Navy,” said Jones. “He leads with humility, integrity, passion, selflessness and positivity and with the backbone the size of a tree trunk. He leads forces that are combat ready… ready to go to sea at anytime, anywhere to take on the enemy at the time of our choosing to secure the desired effect.” Jones also welcomed CAPT Carron and his family, sharing his confidence in their ability to continue the great work being done in the HSC community.
CAPT Kennedy took the stage and gave an emotional and heartfelt thanks to his family and friends that supported him through his tour. He shared his strongest beliefs ranging from his belief in the importance of family, the importance of understanding history and how we can learn from it and how it applies to challenges we face today. He discussed his belief in his Sailors and their capabilities, “I believe Command is one of the greatest responsibilities in the world, the ability to make a difference in the life of Sailors is something I will always cherish. I believe that the HSC community is in good hands, we have arguably the greatest collection of COs and XOs ever, I know that Ryan [CAPT Carron] will continue to move this community forward and I wish you the best”
CAPT Carron, a 1994 graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy and a MH-53E and MH-60S pilot with over 3,800 hours in manned and unmanned platforms, read his orders and assumed command of HSC Wing Pacific. Carron now has responsibility, accountability and authority over one Fleet Replacement squadron, a Weapons School, four expeditionary Sea Combat Squadrons and 5 carrier based squadrons located at NAS North Island, Anderson Air Force Base, Guam and Naval Air Facility, Atsugi, Japan. He is responsible for the readiness requirements for more than 3,600 military personnel and 150 MH-60S Knighthawks and 34 MQ-8 B/C Firescout Unmanned Air Systems. Carron shared his commitment to moving the community forward and thank Commodore Kennedy for all he had done for HSC Win Pacific.