© 2024 WHRO Public Media
5200 Hampton Boulevard, Norfolk VA 23508
757.889.9400 | info@whro.org
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Naval Special Warfare commander at Little Creek fired

Divers from NSW Group 8 train with USS New Mexico in the Atlantic. June 16, 2022. Department of Defense
Divers from NSW Group 8 train with USS New Mexico in the Atlantic. June 16, 2022. Department of Defense

The commander of Naval Special Warfare Group 8, Capt. Richard Zaszewski was fired by Rear Adml. Keith Davids, commander of Naval Special Warfare Command on Wednesday. 

The official reason was a loss of confidence in his ability to command. The Navy typically uses this boilerplate language when releasing a commander without providing a specific reason.

“Navy leaders are held to high standards of personal and professional conduct. They are expected to uphold the highest standards of responsibility, reliability, and leadership, and the Navy holds them accountable when they fall short of those standards,” according to a statement released by the Navy.

Zaszewski is a highly decorated SEAL officer, entering the service in May 1997. He was awarded a silver star and three bronze stars, including one with a V for valor during combat.

He took over at Special Warfare Group 8 in August 2022, a year after the unit was created by combining two other groups - Group 3 and Group 10. 

Group 8 oversees intelligence, training and reconnaissance for the SEAL Teams. They also handle special craft, including a submarine which is designed to carry small groups of special operators on clandestine missions.  

Deputy commodore Capt. Stig Sanness has assumed Zaszewski’s duties as commodore of Groups 8, which is based at Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek, with detachments in Coronado, Cal. and Hawaii.

There is no impact to Group 8's mission readiness, according to a statement released by the Navy.

Steve joined WHRO in 2023 to cover military and veterans. Steve has extensive experience covering the military and working in public media, most recently at KPBS in San Diego, WYIN in Gary, Indiana and WBEZ in Chicago. In the early 2000s, he embedded with members of the Indiana National Guard in Kuwait and Iraq. Steve reports for NPR’s American Homefront Project, a national public media collaboration that reports on American military life and veterans. Steve is also on the board of Military Reporters & Editors.

The world changes fast.

Keep up with daily local news from WHRO. Get local news every weekday in your inbox.

Sign-up here.