USS WEST VIRGINIA SSBN 736
USS West Virginia (SSBN 736) is a United States Navy Ohio-class ballistic missile submarine and the third U.S. Navy ship to be named for West Virginia, the 35th state.
The contract to build West Virginia was awarded to the Electric Boat Division of General Dynamics Corporation in Groton, Conn., on November 21, 1983, and her keel was laid down on December 24, 1987. She was launched October 14, 1989, sponsored by Mrs. Erma Byrd, wife of United States Senator Robert C. Byrd of West Virginia, and commissioned October 20, 1990, with Capt. J. R. Harvey in command of the Blue Crew and Capt. Donald McDermott in command of the Gold Crew.
November 28, 1990 USS West Virginia Blue Crew successfully conducted a Demonstration and Shakedown Operation.
September 29, 1991 SSBN 736 completed its strategic loadout at Strategic Weapons Facility, Atlantic, Kings Bay, Ga. First patrol began Dec. 3.
April 15, 1991 The Gold Crew of the SSBN 736 successfully launched a Trident II (D5) DASO missile on the Eastern Test Range (ETR) off Cape Canaveral, Fla. This was the 37th Trident II test missile flown and the 18th missile to be launched from a Trident submarine.
February 21, 1992 USS West Virginia (Blue) successfully launched four Trident II missiles during a CINC Evaluation Test.
June 18, The Blue Crew of the West Virginia successfully launched four Trident II missiles during a CINC Evaluation Test.
March 17, 1996 SSBN 736 successfully launched two D5 missiles during a Follow-on CINC Evaluation Test.
March 10, 1998 USS West Virginia successfully launched four (two Mk 4 and two Mk 5) Trident II missiles during a Follow-on CINC Evaluation Test.
September 17, 2010 Cmdr. Mike Katahara, commanding officer of the West Virginia (Blue), was relieved by Cmdr. Steven K. Hall, commanding officer of the Gold Crew. Hall will remain in command of the submarine and the combined "green" crew. The approximate 300 Sailors assigned to the two crews merge into one crew of about 110 sailors during the overhaul and refueling period, which will be done at the Norfolk Navy Shipyard (NNSY) in Portsmouth, Va., beginning in early 2011.
December 16, SSBN 736 returned to Kings Bay after a two-day underway for routine operations.
January 11, 2011 USS West Virginia departed homeport for an Engineered Refueling Overhaul (ERO) at Norfolk Naval Shipyard in Portsmouth, Va.
September 9, Cmdr. Adam D. Palmer relieved Cmdr. Steven K. Hall as CO of the West Virginia (Green) during a change-of-command ceremony at the Naval Medical Center in Portsmouth.
October 24, 2013 USS West Virginia departed Norfolk Naval Shipyard for sea trials after a 31-month ERO.
November 8, Cmdr. Benjamin A. Shupp assumed command of the USS West Virginia Gold Crew while Cmdr. Adam D. Palmer assumed command of the Blue Crew during a crew split and an assumption of command ceremony at Refit Wharf, NSB Kings Bay.
February 7, 2014 The West Virginia returned to Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay after underway for routine training.
June 2, USS West Virginia launched two unarmed Trident II D5 missiles, during a Demonstration and Shakedown Operation (DASO), from the Eastern Range Complex off the coast of Cape Canaveral, Fla., marking the 149th and 150th consecutive successful submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM) test flight since 1989.
November 20, SSBN 736 (Blue) returned to NSB Kings Bay following a strategic deterrent patrol.
November 25, Cmdr. Joseph W. Coleman relieved Cmdr. Adam D. Palmer as CO of the USS West Virginia (Blue) during a change-of-command ceremony at the NSB Kings Bay Chapel.
December 18, USS West Virginia (Gold) returned to homeport following routine operations.
December 7, 2015 USS West Virginia (Gold) moored at Refit Wharf 3 on Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay after completing a strategic deterrent patrol.
December 18, Cmdr. Timothy M. Clark relieved Cmdr. Benjamin A. Shupp as CO of the West Virginia (Gold) during a change-of-command ceremony at the NSB Kings Bay Chapel.
March 11, 2017 USS West Virginia (Gold) returned to NSB Kings Bay following a strategic deterrent patrol.