Lt. Cmdr. Joseph Edwards is greeted by his wife and child following the return of USS Greeneville (SSN 772). (U.S. Navy/PO2 Michael H. Lee)

PEARL HARBOR - Friends and families of the crew from USS Greeneville (SSN 772) gathered at the submarine piers to welcome back the Los Angeles-class submarine as she returned to Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam after completing a six month deployment to the Western Pacific region, Nov. 3.

"It’s hard to overstate how proud I am of this crew," said Cmdr. Gabriel Anseeuw, Greeneville's commanding officer. “Our tasking spanned almost the entire spectrum of submarine operations, continuously forcing the officers and crew to think on their feet, and they did so superbly.”

While deployed, Greeneville made a first-ever port visit for a submarine to Puerto Princesa, a city on the eastern side of the island of Palawan in the Republic of the Philippines. They also qualified five officers and 32 enlisted Sailors in submarines and advanced 20 Sailors in paygrade.

“The amount of mentoring and training for the new members was astonishing,” said Master Chief Petty Officer Kevin Aselson, from Fargo, North Dakota. “Senior crew members passed along professional knowledge that helped with preparation for ship’s qualifications.”

Greeneville steamed more than 40,000 nautical miles and completed almost two dozen strait transits.

“I found it inspiring to see how every single member contributed to the mission at hand,” said Anseeuw. “They adapted extremely well to an ever-changing environment, ensuring the mission at hand was accomplished safely and effectively.”

Greeneville measures more than 360 feet long and weighs more than 6,900 tons when submerged. It was christened Sept. 17, 1994 and commissioned on Feb. 16, 1996 at Naval Station Norfolk. The Greeneville arrived at its current homeport of Pearl Harbor, Hawaii in March 1997.

USS Greeneville (SSN 772) prepare to moor at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Nov. 3. (U.S. Navy/PO2 Michael H. Lee)