Cmdr. Thomas Frosch relieved Cmdr. Todd Marzano in a ceremony held on Aug. 13 at Lemoore Naval Air Station. It was the 48th change of command for the "Blue Diamonds" of VFA-146.
During the change of command ceremony, Capt. Kevin Mannix, deputy commander CVW-14, praised Cmdr. Marzano for his leadership during his tour as commanding officer of VFA-146. The tour included more than 3,500 mishap-free flight hours during the 2009 Western Pacific deployment onboard the USS John C. Stennis and the 2010 Rim of the Pacific exercise onboard the USS Ronald Reagan.
Marzano was presented the Meritorious Service Medal by Capt. Hamlin Ortiz-Marty, commander CVW-14, for outstanding service while serving as commanding officer. His next duty station will be U.S. Northern Command in Peterson AFB, Colorado Springs, Colo.
Cmdr. Frosch was raised in Clinton Township, Mich. and was commissioned in May 1992, graduating from the United States Naval Academy with a bachelor's degree in engineering. He completed flight training in March 1995 in Kingsville, Texas and reported to the VFA-106 "Gladiators" at NAS Cecil Field in Florida for initial F/A-18C training.
Frosch's first fleet assignment was with the VFA-87 "Golden Warriors" at NAS Cecil Field, where he deployed twice. His first deployment was onboard USS John F. Kennedy in support of Operation Southern Watch. Just over a year later, he deployed again this time onboard USS Theodora Roosevelt, flying combat missions in support of Operation Allied Force in Kosovo and Operation Southern Wach in Iraq. In December 1999, he was selected to attend U.S. Naval Test Pilot School in Patuxent River, Md. After graduation, he was designated as a test pilot with VX-23.
In January 2003, CDR Frosch was assigned to VFA-192 in Atsugi, Japan as a Department Head. While with the "World Famous Golden Dragons," he made his third deployment onboard the USS Kitty Hawk, this time supporting Operations Southern Watch and Enduring Freedom. As a department head, he held the positions as safety officer, operations officer and maintenance officer.
Following his department head tour, Frosch received orders to the Naval War College in Newport, RI.
He graduated in June 2006 with a master's degree in national security and strategic studies. He was then sent to the NATO J5 Division at the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe in Casteau, Belgium. During his joint tour, Frosch deployed to Kabul, Afghanistan as an individual augmentee with the NATO International Security Assistance Force. While at SHAPE, Frosch screened for Operational Command and received orders to the Blue Diamonds in May 2009.
The new commander is married to Leigh, a native of Worcester, Pa., and they reside in Lemoore with their three children.
The new executive officer for the Blue Diamonds is Cmdr. Daniel Baxter of Gretna, La. He is married to Jen Baxter of Waynesboro, Miss. They reside in Hanford with their three children.