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NAPLES, Italy — One of the only two flagships in the U.S. Navy has a new commander.

Capt. Ted Williams took command of the 6th Fleet command ship USS Mount Whitney at an onboard ceremony at its home port in Gaeta, Italy, on Wednesday, according to a Navy release.

Williams replaces Capt. Jeffrey Ruth, who will move to San Diego to be on the staff of Commander, Naval Air Forces, Pacific Fleet.

The Mount Whitney served in March as the command ship for operations Odyssey Dawn and Unified Protector, the U.S. and NATO campaign against Moammar Gadhafi’s regime in Libya.

Ruth received the Legion of Merit from 6th Fleet command Vice Adm. Harry B. Harris Jr. during Wednesday’s ceremony.

“Any good ship captain would tell you that the true measure of any command success is not how well he or she performs, but how well his or her ship performs, on deployment and on station,” Harris said, according to the release. “This flagship has truly enabled the strengthening of bilateral and multilateral relationships across the U.S. 6th Fleet region.”

Williams comes to the Mount Whitney after serving as interim executive officer of the USS Eisenhower this summer after then-executive officer Capt. Robert Gamberg was relieved of command.

From staff reports


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