MARINE CORPS LOGISTICS BASE ALABNY, Ga. -- A new battalion commanding officer took charge here after a change of command ceremony Tuesday.
Maj. Kent D. Morrison, an Americus, Ga., native who held the position since Sept. 1998, relinquished command to Maj. Stephen E. Reynolds, a Beverly, Mass., native.
Morrison, who arrived at MCLB Albany in June 1997, first assumed duties as the executive officer of Headquarters Battalion, before being assigned duty as battalion commander.
ÒYou can be justifiably proud of the accomplishments of the battalion and of all Marines who served with you during your tour,Ó Col. Larry P. Cole, MCLB Albany commanding officer, said to Morrison. ÒYour concerted effort to ensure Marines maintained the Ôwarrior spiritÕ through field exercises, marksmanship training, airborne qualification, and professional military education was exceptional.Ó
ÒKnow that your leadership, judgment, and compassion positively influenced the lives of all who served with you,Ó Cole said.
ÒIt has been my honor and my privilege to lead Marines of your character,Ó Morrison then said to the Marines of Headquarters Battalion.
Morrison spoke highly of all the Marines who contributed to his success as commander.
ÒTo my staff noncommissioned officers Ñ I could not have done my job without your leadership, your professionalism, your guidance, and your dedication,Ó said Morrison.
ÒTo Sergeant Major Jones Ñ IÕm proud of you, and IÕm proud of what you taught me,Ó he said.
ÒLet us never forget who we are, where we came from, how we got to be where we are today, and those who gave their lives so that we could be Marines today,Ó Morrison said to the Headquarters Battalion Marines.
ÒLet us never forget their legacy and always live up to their standards,Ó he said.
Reynolds first gave words of appreciation for the opportunity to serve as battalion commander.
ÒColonel Cole, thank you for your confidence and for giving me this opportunity,Ó he said.
With grateful words and emotion, Reynolds spoke to Morrison about his accomplishments as commanding officer.
ÒYou have been a dedicated mentor to me and so many people on this base,Ó said Reynolds. ÒThere isnÕt a Marine standing out here today who hasnÕt been positively touched by your leadership Ñ professionally and personally.
ÒYou have been a superlative leader of Marines,Ó he said.
Reynolds then made a solid promise to Morrison, as he assumed the new command.
ÒI promise you, standing in front of your Marines, that I will continue to do the same,Ó he said, Òand my words will be Ôdo right, and fear no manÕ.Ó
ÒAs you assume command of the Marines assigned to Headquarters Battalion, I encourage you to build upon the solid foundation set forth by Major Morrison,Ó Cole said to Reynolds. ÒYou have my complete confidence.Ó
ÒThese colors that we just exchanged (battalion colors), Ñ I will do everything in my power to ensure they are kept as clean, as bright and shiny as they are today when I turn this command over,Ó Reynolds said.
ÒAs I passed the flag (battalion colors), I said what all commanders say,Ó said Morrison, Òplease take care of them (Headquarters Battalion Marines). I know you will.Ó
Before coming to MCLB Albany, Reynolds served at Camp Pendleton, Calif., as the operations officer, Marine Expeditionary Unit Service Support Group 11, 11th MEU. While at this assignment, Reynolds completed a deployment of the Western Pacific and participated in Operation Desert Thunder and the evacuation of U.S. citizens from the Republic of Eritrea.
ReynoldsÕ personal decorations include the Meritorious Service Medal, the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal with one gold star, and the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal with one gold star.
Reynolds is married to Marine Capt. Nicole L. Reynolds, formerly Maurey, of Lewistown, Pa., who now serves as the battalion executive officer here.
Maj. and Capt. Reynolds are expecting their first child this summer.