Navy Relieves Commander of Amphibious Warship USS Somerset

June 7, 2024 4:07 PM
An Army UH-60 Blackhawk assigned to 2-158th Assault Helicopter Battalion, 16th Combat Aviation Brigade, 7th Infantry Division, leave the landing area of the USS Somerset (LPD-25) while underway in the Gulf of Thailand, Feb. 29, 2024. US Army Photo

The Navy has relieved the commanding officer of amphibious transport dock USS Somerset (LPD-25), the service announced Friday.

“Rear Adm. Christopher Stone, Commander, Expeditionary Strike Group 7 (ESG 7), relieved Capt. Michel Brandt as commanding officer of the San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock USS Somerset (LPD 25), June 6, 2024, due to loss of confidence in her ability to lead the crew,” reads a Navy news release.

Brandt will now head to Naval Surface Force following the relief.

“Capt. Tate Robinson will replace Capt. Brandt as commanding officer until a permanent relief arrives,” the release continues.

Somerset has been operating in the Indo-Pacific for the last few months and participated in the Balikatan exercise series with the Philippines last month. The amphibious transport dock was supposed to deploy with the Boxer Amphibious Ready Group, but deployed by itself in January due to maintenance problems with the other two ships in the unit.

A service biography for Brandt was not immediately available.

“Navy commanding officers are held to high standards of personal and professional conduct,” reads the Navy news release announcing Brandt’s relief. “They are expected to uphold the highest standards of responsibility, reliability and leadership, and the Navy holds them accountable when they fall short of those standards.”

Mallory Shelbourne

Mallory Shelbourne

Mallory Shelbourne is a reporter for USNI News. She previously covered the Navy for Inside Defense and reported on politics for The Hill.
Follow @MalShelbourne

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