USARPAC becomes 4-star headquarters with CoC

| July 5, 2013 | 2 Comments
Gen. Vincent Brooks (left) receives the guidon from Army Chief of Staff Gen. Raymond Odierno, officially accepting command of USARPAC from Lt. Gen. Francis Wiercinski (right) during a change of command and Flying V ceremony at Palm Circle, July 2. (Photo by Russell Dodson, U.S. Army-Pacific Public Affairs)

Gen. Vincent Brooks (left) receives the guidon from Army Chief of Staff Gen. Raymond Odierno, officially accepting command of USARPAC from Lt. Gen. Francis Wiercinski (right) during a change of command and Flying V ceremony at Palm Circle, July 2. (Photo by Russell Dodson, U.S. Army-Pacific Public Affairs)

Staff Sgt. Amber Robinson, U.S. Army-Pacific Public Affairs

FORT SHAFTER — Gen. Vincent Brooks took command of U.S. Army-Pacific from Lt. Gen. Francis Wiercinski at a change of command ceremony, July 2.

Cannons thunder as Soldiers from U.S. Army-Pacific welcome Gen. Vincent Brooks to the command during a change of command and Flying V ceremony at Palm Circle, July 2. The transition to a four-star headquarters highlights the continued focus for the Army in the Asia-Pacific region. (Photo by Russell Dodson, U.S. Army-Pacific Public Affairs)

Cannons thunder as Soldiers from U.S. Army-Pacific welcome Gen. Vincent Brooks to the command during a change of command and Flying V ceremony at Palm Circle, July 2. The transition to a four-star headquarters highlights the continued focus for the Army in the Asia-Pacific region. (Photo by Russell Dodson, U.S. Army-Pacific Public Affairs)

The event on Palm Circle, presided over by Gen. Raymond Odierno, Army Chief of Staff, was a historic moment for USARPAC as it formally transitioned from a three-star to a four-star command, symbolizing the continued rebalance for the United States in the Asia-Pacific region.

“Ladies and gentlemen, the significance of today’s ceremony and the message of our commitment here is a clear message. It’s a clear message to the region, and we’re honored to be a part of it,” Brooks said.

“What an honor it is to be on this historic field, where the U.S. Army’s presence in the Pacific has been evident every day for over a century,” Brooks said.

“And while the challenges before us are numerous, I think the opportunities for us to make a difference for the Army and for this joint team are even more plentiful,” Brooks added. “I’m honored to lead this command, keeping it available and responsive to the requirements that each of you set and the directives that each of you give.”

FORT SHAFTER — Soldiers from U.S. Army-Pacific welcome Gen. Vincent Brooks to the command during a change of command and Flying V ceremony at Palm Circle, here, July 2. The transition to a four-star headquarters highlights the continued focus for the U.S. Army in the Asia-Pacific region. (Photo by Russell Dodson, U.S. Army-Pacific Public Affairs)

FORT SHAFTER — Soldiers from U.S. Army-Pacific welcome Gen. Vincent Brooks to the command during a change of command and Flying V ceremony at Palm Circle, here, July 2. The transition to a four-star headquarters highlights the continued focus for the U.S. Army in the Asia-Pacific region. (Photo by Russell Dodson, U.S. Army-Pacific Public Affairs)

Wiercinski, who is retiring after 34 years and plans to make Hawaii his home, served as USARPAC commander since March 2011 and told the audience his time served here was a dream come true.

“Today is a great day for Pacific Command, the Army and for U.S. Army Pacific,” said Wiercinski. “Commanding this unit has truly been an honor and something I will never forget.”

Admiral Samuel J. Locklear, commander, U.S. Pacific Command, bid a fond aloha to Wiercinski and his wife, Jeannine, and welcomed Brooks and his wife, Dr. Carol Brooks, into the military ohana.

Brooks expressed his gratitude to Wiercinski for his support and guidance during his transition into his new position.

“Thank you in advance for the opportunities to work with you in the future,” said Brooks. “I’ll ask of you only one thing, and that is to do your best, everyday. And I commit to you that Carol and I will do the same.”

In addition to the traditional military pomp and circumstance of the ceremony, a special award was presented to USARPAC. Irene Inouye, widow of the late Senator Daniel Inouye, presented the Inouye Star with Ordierno accepting.

The Inouye Star, a crystal eagle statue, will be displayed at USARPAC headquarters in lasting tribute and as a reminder of her husband’s role in making USARPAC a four-star theater Army headquarters.

“My late husband felt that this fourth star was critical to our position in the Pacific,” said Inouye.

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  1. MSgt John Gott says:

    Looking to contact the PA photographer who captured the imagery of this photo shoot. Would it be possible to please pass on my contact info to Mr. Russell Dodson?

    Thank You

    MSgt John Gott
    Superintendent, Public Affairs
    Joint Base Charleston

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