599th changes command aboard Mighty Mo

| July 31, 2015 | 0 Comments
Above left, incoming 599th Trans. Bde. commander, Col. James Smith, speaks to assembled guests after the brigade's change of command ceremony. Above right, Maj. Gen. Susan Davidson, commander, MSDDC, offers guidance and congratulations to Smith. The ceremony was held on the fantail of the battleship USS Missouri, Pearl Harbor, July 23.

Incoming 599th Trans. Bde. commander, Col. James Smith, speaks to assembled guests after the brigade’s change of command ceremony.

Story and photos by Donna Klapakis                                                                      
599th Transportation Brigade Public Affairs

 

FORD ISLAND — Col. Shannon C. Cox relinquished command of the 599th Transportation Brigade to Col. James M. Smith in a change of command ceremony, July 23, on the fantail deck of the Battleship Missouri Memorial here.

Smith said he looked forward to commanding the unit.

“I am proud to join Team Pacific and reinforce the already exemplary efforts of providing the combatant commander and service component commanders flexible surface deployment and distribution options to support theater security and unified operations,” Smith said.

“I look forward to meeting and serving with our established host nation partners through the region, as well as our strategic partners across the Department of Defense and commercial industry. I’m also looking forward to forging new partnerships as the global mission dictates,” he continued.

Cox will move to U.S. Pacific Command headquarters at Camp H.M. Smith, where she will be in charge of plans and exercises for the logistics directorate. She thanked the battalions and each section of the brigade staff, pointing out their individual contributions to the command.

“I appreciate everything that each of you do on a daily basis to make your unit the best that you can, always accomplishing every mission you have been tasked with,” she said.

 Above right, Maj. Gen. Susan Davidson, commander, MSDDC, offers guidance and congratulations to Smith. The ceremony was held on the fantail of the battleship USS Missouri, Pearl Harbor, July 23.

Above right, Maj. Gen. Susan Davidson, commander, MSDDC, offers guidance and congratulations to Smith. The ceremony was held on the fantail of the battleship USS Missouri, Pearl Harbor, July 23.

Maj. Gen. Susan A. Davidson, commanding general of the 599th Trans. Bde’s higher headquarters, Military Surface Deployment and Distribution Command at Scott Air Force Base, Illinois, presided over the ceremony. She praised both outgoing and incoming commanders.

“Throughout her time here, Shannon sustained a ‘ready for war’ mentality that filtered down through the brigade and through her battalions, but at the same time, she also fostered a command climate that placed the care and safety of her people first and foremost,” Davidson said.

“Coming to us with a wealth of experience, James clearly understands the importance of supporting the warfighter,” Davidson continued. “He understands what it takes to create and sustain support at the point of engagement.

“He has multiple combat deployments in support of our Soldiers: Operations Southern Watch, Iraqi Freedom, New Dawn, and he has served in the right positions to give him the skills and experience to lead,” she added.

This change of command was the sixth for the 599th on the USS Missouri. It was especially significant because Sept. 2 will be the 70th anniversary of the signing of the instrument of surrender to end World War II onboard the ship.

Because of limited space, the fantail deck of any ship, even the Mighty Mo, would be out of the question for most brigades. However, only the 599th headquarters is in Hawaii. Battalions and detachments are scattered throughout the Pacific.

Support

Multiple Army units generously lent support for the 599th’s ceremony. Of note:

  • The 338th U.S. Army Reserve Band brass quintet from Whitehall, Ohio
  • A 25th Infantry Division Sustainment Brigade detail of troops and ushers
  • The Pacific Regional Health Command color guard
  • Chaplain (Lt. Col.) James W. Blount, U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii
  • Schofield Barracks Health Clinic medics

 

 

 

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Category: Change of command, Leadership, News

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