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PEARL HARBOR - Cmdr. David Lum relieved Capt. Charles Sharkey as the commanding officer of U.S. Pacific Fleet's Navy Reserve Maritime Operations Center (MOC) Detachment 301 during a ceremony aboard the Battleship Missouri Memorial, Dec. 17.
Sharkey will move on to serve as the Reserve chief staff officer on the U.S. Third Fleet staff in San Diego.
Rear Adm. Russell Penniman, Reserve deputy commander and chief of staff for U.S. Pacific Fleet, commended Sharkey on his leadership the as commanding officer.
"Capt. Sharkey's performance throughout his tour here has been nothing short but exemplary. The primary responsibility of Pac Fleet Det 301 is to support the Pacific Fleet staff in the planning and execution of fleet operations," Penniman said. "This is no small task considering the United States Pacific Fleet is the world's largest fleet, and our area of responsibility covers over a million square miles of ocean and littorals."
Penniman presented Sharkey with the Legion of Merit. The award highlighted Sharkey's efforts for leading his unit in completing more than 4,800 man-days of direct support, and for personally filling critical leadership requirements for the operations directorate during MOC training, exercise evolutions and real world events.
"The ability for Capt. Sharkey to take significant leadership roles within the Pac Fleet Maritime Operation Center, and to integrate members of this unit into various watch positions during fleet operations and during exercises, didn't just happen, but rather came about through the process of careful preparation in training, education and experience," Penniman added. "During his tenure, Capt. Sharkey masterly leverage training opportunities provided by Tactical Training Group Pacific, Navy Post Graduate School, the Navy War College and the Asia Pacific Center for Security Studies, to ensure his unit members were ready to step up to the plate and execute their mission."
The ceremony marked the end of a 24-month command tour for Sharkey. Under his leadership, the detachment augmented the active duty component with more than 40 qualified officers and enlisted personnel in support of Pacific Fleet current operations. "I am incredibly proud of the success of this crew," Sharkey said. "Maritime Ops Det. 301 is trained, and ready at a moments notice to do the job."
Sharkey highlighted his unit's recent experience supporting Operation Damayan, an operation providing humanitarian assistance to the Government of the Philippines in the aftermath of Super Typhoon Haiyan/Yolonda.
"Our response to this crisis validated all the training we have been doing including operational level of war, battle watch quals and N31 desk support," Sharkey said. "We seamlessly integrated with the active duty during this crisis. There was no difference between reserve and active, as it should be."
Lum enlisted in the U.S. Navy in 1986 as an Electrician's Mate in the nuclear propulsion program. He is a 1992 graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, and earned his master's degree in Systems Engineering from the U.S. Naval Postgraduate School and is a recipient of the school's Wayne E. Meyer Award for Excellence in Systems Engineering. He was recently selected for promotion to Captain next year.
"To my team members, I very much look forward to working with each of you," Lum said. "This is a very exciting time in history of the Pacific Fleet as it continues to transition in its new role as the Theater Joint Force Maritime Component Commander in the Pacific."