PCU Massachusetts Hold Change of Command
25 August 2022
NORFOLK, Va. --
The Virginia-class fast-attack submarine Pre-commissioning Unit Massachusetts (SSN 798) held a change of command onboard Naval Station Norfolk, Aug. 25.
Cmdr. Michael Siedsma relieved Capt. Erik Lundberg as commanding officer of Massachusetts.
Capt. Brian Hogan, commodore, Submarine Squadron Eight, highlighted Lundberg’s accomplishments while aboard Massachusetts.
“Captain Lundberg spent his entire tour establishing the successful conditions for a future crew and the future commanding officer,” said Hogan. “Lundberg and his crew built a command that previously did not exist. He executed every shipyard requirement that came his way and established a solid foundation which will last the next three or four decades.”
Hogan went on to congratulate and thank Lundberg on his time as Massachusetts’ commanding officer.
“Captain Lundberg has absolutely contributed positively and significantly to our nation’s future security,” said Hogan. “I have appreciated your thoughtful approach to command and the clarity you brought to the job and your effective balance of integrated readiness. Thank you for everything you have done.”
Hogan welcomes Siedsma as the new commanding officer of Massachusetts.
“Commander Siedsma is no stranger to new constructions or the challenges they bring,” said Hogan. “He is bringing a vast richness of experience to the job as commanding officer of the Massachusetts. Additionally, I personally appreciated his recent help with Submarine Squadron Eight that added a great deal of value and I know he will do the same with Massachusetts.”
Lundberg’s successes were not his alone, and he let that be known to the crew during his remarks.
"When the command was established in December of 2019, we had no processes, only an understanding of what our construction schedule was going to entail,” said Lundberg. “Our Massachusetts’ Sailors adapted and kept plugging away to getting themselves ready to stand watch aboard the ship. Despite construction delays, the crew pressed on and did so with discipline and efficiency.”
After assuming command, Siedsma thanked Lundberg for laying the groundwork as Massachusetts’ first commanding officer.
“Building a crew of a submarine from the ground up is no easy task and the team under your leadership has dedicated countless hours in establishing the command’s lasting legacy,” said Siedsma. “Captain Lundberg, you have built an excellent culture and set us on the path of success. I look forward to continuing the great work you started.”
Siedsma continued on to address the crew of Massachusetts.
“Over the last month, I have known each of you as a professional,” said Siedsma. “Choosing to serve for your own reasons, you can help finish building and testing our mighty warship. I have observed your technical competence, determination to get the job done right, and your resiliency during the hardships of the construction process. I am humbled by your efforts. You all have established an exceptional foundation to prepare us for the challenges we will face together in the coming months. I want you all to know I am honored to be your captain.”
The Virginia-class, also known as the VA-class or 774-class, is a class of nuclear-powered fast attack submarines in service with the U.S. Navy. These submarines are designed for a broad spectrum of open-ocean and littoral missions. They were conceived as a less-expensive alternative to the Seawolf-class attack submarines, designed during the Cold War era, and are replacing older Los Angeles-class submarines.
Fast-attack submarines are multi-mission platforms enabling five of the six Navy maritime strategy core capabilities - sea control, power projection, forward presence, maritime security, and deterrence. They are designed to excel in anti-submarine warfare, anti-ship warfare, strike warfare, special operations, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, irregular warfare and mine warfare. Fast-attack submarines project power ashore with special operations forces and Tomahawk cruise missiles in the prevention or preparation of regional crises.
The Virginia-class submarine is 377 feet long and 34 feet wide, and weighs about 7,900 tons when submerged. Underwater, it can reach speeds in excess of 25 knots.