Every one of us who has served in the Navy - whether at sea, ashore, under the sea or in the air - has had that CO, XO, DH, DO, Chief or other senior leader who made our lives and the lives of our Sailors a living hell.
At the same time, we've had people in those same leadership positions who have made our service to the Navy and her Sailors a privilege. We are very fortunate that this type of leadership is far more prevalent than what has been described in the CO of USS COWPENS.
I don't doubt that senior Navy leadership is listening acutely to what is being said and written about this particular CO firing and perhaps it will bring them to a tipping point in their thinking about how we prepare our officers for positions of significant leadership and how we evaluate them.
The damage done by one Commanding Officer extends far beyond the skin of the ship, beyond the fine COWPENS crew, beyond the FDNF and beyond our Navy. We can condemn this one officer very easily - but, keep in mind that many people played a role in the development of this officer and furthering her career. All of them are complicit in this unfortunate page in our Navy's history.