MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. --
The highest ranking officer of 1st Battalion, 10th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, relinquished authority of the battalion to his successor in a change of command ceremony aboard Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, N.C., July 7, 2011.
Lieutenant Col. Jeffrey C. Smitherman presented the battalion colors to Lt. Col. Robert J. Hallett in a symbolic transfer of authority.
Smitherman has spent the past few years with the battalion, and his passion and love for his Marines and job will be missed by many within the unit.
“He truly believes in what he’s doing and loves his job more than most people I know. He has a passion for artillery unlike anyone I’ve ever seen in this community,” said Sgt. Maj. Juan C. Alvarado, the battalion’s sergeant major. “I will be sad to see him leave, but any battalion he goes to will be in good hands.”
After the “Star Spangled Banner” was played, Smitherman stood up and addressed his old battalion.
“The Marines in my battalion helped establish the future of Marine artillery and how it is employed in a counter-insurgency environment. These Marines had great leadership to help me out the entire time while I was their commanding officer,” said Smitherman. “While we were deployed, it was like watching history unfold right before my eyes.”
To close the ceremony, Hallett took time to speak to his family and friends, and finally to his new Marines, giving everyone an idea of what to expect from their new commander.
“I’m blessed to have the opportunity to be a part of this battalion,” said Hallett. “I am committed to giving these Marines everything I’ve got and I can’t wait to begin.”