USS Greeneville will still be around, CO says | Local News
Although the USS Greeneville is eligible for decommissioning, Navy officials have instead approved it for refueling, meaning the boat could remain in service for about 20 more years, Commander Robert Lane said in Greeneville on Friday. .
The boat “could be here for a long time,” he told a press conference on the terrace of the General Morgan Inn & Conference Center.
Refueling a nuclear submarine is a months-long process due to safety protocols necessitated by nuclear fuel, Lane said after the press conference. This means that the boat will be in dry dock for about two years, while the spent fuel is removed and properly processed, and the new fuel is put in place.
Lane was in Greeneville with 11 of the ship’s crew to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the fast-attack nuclear submarine named after that town. Former crew members are also in town, with more expected to arrive on Saturday. Sailors are staying with host families or local hotels as they help the town of Greeneville celebrate Independence Day.
USS Greeneville crew members and their families will serve as Grand Marshals during the city’s July 4 Parade, which begins at 9:15 p.m. downtown and ends with fireworks at 10 p.m.
The celebration leading up to the climactic events kicks off at 5 p.m. today with some of the sailors firing on the grounds of the Niswonger Foundation at 223 N. Main St.
John Render, the current chief of the boat, or COB, greeted the town and said it was “a joy to be in Greeneville”. He also described the tasks related to his work on the boat,
Former USS Greeneville COB Stan Simmerman amplified Render’s comments, noting that, in his opinion, a COB’s job is one of the most important in the US Navy.
Positioning the COB on a submarine is particularly difficult as the COB must understand almost all of the boat’s functions and be prepared to respond to a wide range of situations that might arise.
He described the job as providing an “interface between the captain and the crew”.
Simmerman also spoke about his first visit to Greeneville soon after the boat was named, and how he and other uniformed naval personnel lined up at a local McDonalds, where young men proudly held them informed that they were in a town whose name appeared on a US Navy Nuclear Submarine.
Dale Long of Greeneville, president of USS Greeneville, Inc., told the story of how the boat was named after this small town in eastern Tennessee, and assured sailors that “Greeneville love you, and this is your home ”.
Bob Rediske, a “plank carrier” of the boat (Navy parlance meaning he was a crew member when the submarine went into service) now lives in Greene County and in his comments has praises the submarine and the city it is named for. Other former crew members are currently looking for accommodation in Greene County, he said.
Trevor Kahland, 21-year-old son of board owner Travis Kahland, expressed his appreciation for Greeneville and his happiness at being able to attend Tusculum University through the USS Greeneville scholarship. He has about a year of school left and is considering a career in forestry.
Currently, Kahland works at Aubrey Restaurant while attending school and volunteering in the Cherokee National Forest.
Being in Greeneville for three years gave him the love of the mountains here. “I’m not going back to Nebraska anytime soon,” the native Nebraska said.
Mat Tanner, a former fire control technician aboard the USS Greeneville, briefly explained the origin of the term “board owner” or “board owner.” It dates back to the early days of sailing, when ships were made of wood. The original sailors of these ships received a board from the ship in honor of their status.
Ultimately, the USS Greeneville’s plank owners will receive a small piece of the submarine whenever it is taken out of service, he said.