Capt. Honors “Held to a Higher Standard”

When this story first “broke,” I purposefully did not include it on this blog. Coverage, including video clips, was available on virtually every other media outlet.

However, the issue has grown much larger and more divisive. Some see the relieving of Capt. Honors from command as a blow to morale. Yet, others view it as a necessary step to maintain Navy standards. The debate will rage on and could no longer be avoided.

Below is part of the official U.S. Navy press release on Capt. Owen Honors being relieved of his command of the USS Enterprise.

Atlantic Ocean (July 7, 2004) -- An SH-60F Seahawk assigned to the "Dragon Slayers" of Helicopter Antisubmarine Squadron One One (HS-11) hovers over the flight deck of the nuclear powered aircraft carrier USS Enterprise. Photo courtesy of the U.S. Navy.

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.

“After personally reviewing the videos created while serving as executive officer, I have lost confidence in Capt. Honors’ ability to lead effectively,” 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.”
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.

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