Spearfish man takes command of newest US Navy ship

GULFPORT, Miss. (KEVN/KOTA TV) - A Spearfish man is now in command of the U.S. Navy’s newest warship, the USS Cincinnati.

The USS Cincinnati (LCS 20) is the newest Independence-variant littoral combat ship in the Navy. Its commander, Jedediahh Kloppel, is from Spearfish. (U.S. Navy photo)

Cmdr. Jedediah Kloppel reported the ship “ready and in his command” at a ceremony Saturday in Gulfport, Miss. The ship, with a crew of 70 officers and enlisted personnel, will be homeported in San Diego.

“Over the last 18 years, I’ve served on good crews, bad crews. Commands have struggled, commands have excelled. And I can tell you that this crew is the best crew I have ever served with,” Kloppel said.

Kloppel’s operational tours include serving as communications officer aboard USS Portland (LSD 37) and USS Ponce (LPD 15); weapons officer and combat systems officer aboard USS Stockdale (DDG 106); operations officer for commander, Carrier Strike Group 8; commissioning executive officer of USS Manchester (LCS-14); and executive officer of USS Cincinnati (LCS 20) Blue Crew.

The Cincinnati is a littoral combat ship designed to operate close to shore. These ships are assault transports that include helicopters and small boats; as well as cargo for a small assault force.

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