Navy Det welcomes new commander
October 10, 2013
The Center for Seabees and Facilities Engineering Navy Detachment Fort Leonard Wood held a change of charge ceremony Oct. 4 in the Engineer Regimental Room at the post's museum where Lt. Jeffery Turner relinquished command to Lt. Alberto Alshabazz.
Turner, who took command of the detachment in June 2010, said when he found out that he was coming to Fort Leonard Wood, he had no idea what to expect as the only naval officer on an Army post.
"I had no expectations, but what made coming to Fort Leonard Wood easy, was everybody who has a different uniform than what I wear," Turner said. "There is no greater host than the Army, and you welcome every Sailor with open arms."
Speaking to the Maneuver Support Center of Excellence and Fort Leonard Wood leaders in the audience, Turner expressed his gratitude for their hospitality and for teaching him about Army policies and regulations.
"I hope I did my best to make sure every Sailor followed the exact same standards and level of excellence that Maj. Gen. Smith (MSCoE and Fort Leonard Wood commanding general) expects from every Soldier, Sailor, Airman and Marine," Turner said.
On behalf of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the U.S. Army Engineer School, Col. Dan Larsen, 1st Engineer Brigade commander, presented Turner with the Bronze Order of De Fleury, and said Turner represented a key point inscribed on the front of the medal.
"On the front in Latin the medal says, 'A memorial and reward for courage and boldness;' we have an example up here of that courage and boldness," Larsen said. "As an ITRO (Interservice Training Review Organization) partner, as a member of the Fort Leonard Wood team, Lt. Turner was never afraid to speak his mind."
Turner's citation captured the essesence of his professionalism.
"(Lt. Turner's) leadership and indisputable dedication throughout his service had a resounding effect on Engineer Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines and the Engineer Regiment and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers," the citation reads.
Alshabazz joins Fort Leonard Wood from the THIRD Naval Construction Regiment in Atlanta, Ga., where he served as the Training and Readiness officer. He said he looks forward to becoming a part of the Fort Leonard Wood team and carrying on Turner's momentum for the Navy detachment.
"I am especially excited to carry on the positive impacts that have been implemented, not only to the development of our Sailors, but our Soldiers, Airmen and Marines," Alshabazz said.
Turner, who will be retiring, said serving his country has been about one thing: people.
"For 25 years I have done exactly what the Navy asked me to do. Some tasks were easier than others, but through it all, I had … you, my Sailors," he said. "It's not about the job, it's not about the equipment it's not about our mission, it's all about people. As long as you rely on each other, there's no mountain we can't climb, there is no obstacle we cannot blow up or get around, and at the end of the day we will be stronger for it."