Vice Adm. Barry M. Costello was relieved by Vice Adm. Samuel J. Locklear III as commander of U.S. 3rd Fleet during a change of command ceremony May 3 at fleet headquarters in Point Loma.
During his tour as commander, U.S. 3rd Fleet, Costello advanced the Navy’s Sea Shield vision for a technologically advanced Navy.
“Together we have taken fleet training to the next level, taken the lead for the Navy in homeland defense and disaster relief, and helped shape the Navy of the future through leadership of the Sea Shield requirements process,” he said.
Costello retires from active duty after serving his country for more than 31 years. As U.S. 3rd Fleet commander, he was responsible for training and deploying more than 35,000 Sailors on 134 operational assets.
“I am humbled to have led the 3rd Fleet team. You are ordinary people doing extraordinary work everyday, and I am proud to have been your shipmate,” he stated in a farewell message to the fleet.
Costello attended Holy Cross College. He holds a Juris Doctor from Albany Law School. He served two tours on the Joint Staff in Washington, D.C. and was the chief of Legislative Affairs for the Navy. His sea tours include commanding officer of USS Elliot (DD 967) and commander, Destroyer Squadron 23.
During Operation Iraqi Freedom, he simultaneously served as commander, Cruiser Destroyer Group 1; commander, Constellation Strike Group; and commander, Task Force 55.
Costello was acknowledged by the United Kingdom with the Honorary Award of Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire for his Iraqi Freedom leadership.
Locklear graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1977, with a Bachelor of Science degree in operations analysis. His sea tours include: commanding officer of USS Leftwich (DD 984); commander, Destroyer Squadron 2; and both commander, Cruiser Destroyer Group 5 and commander, Carrier Strike Group
11 while embarked in the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier USS Nimitz (CVN 68).
Locklear reports from Washington, where he was director of the Programming Division for the Chief of Naval Operations Office.
"After looking at all the past commanders of 3rd Fleet, from Halsey to Costello, I've come to the realization that I have big shoes to fill, but I can't imagine a better challenge -- this job is a dream come true for me and my family," Locklear said.
He takes command
of U.S. 3rd Fleet’s area of responsibility from the international dateline to the eastern Pacific, and command of the ships and airplanes operating in those waters.
From Commander, U.S. 3rd Fleet Public Affairs