21st TSC holds retreat, tattoo ceremony to honor former commanding general
August 21, 2009
KAISERSLAUTERN, Germany - The 21st Theater Sustainment Command held a retreat and tattoo ceremony dedicated to its former commanding general at the parade field on Panzer Kaserne Aug. 19.
On the eve of relinquishing command, Maj. Gen. Yves J. Fontaine was treated to a special ceremony in his honor. The combined ceremony served as a solemn reminder of the end of Fontaine's tour of duty at the 21st TSC as well as a celebratory musical tribute to his service and career in the Army.
In addition to a number of distinguished guests from the Kaiserslautern military and civilian community, Gen. Carter F. Ham, the commanding general of U.S. Army Europe and Seventh Army, was present as the guest speaker.
Ham noted that the year and a half in which Fontaine served as the 21st TSC's commanding general was a very busy time with many changes for the 21st TSC.
"It was a time in which the 21st TSC was transformed from what it was for many, many years to what it is today. A time that brought changes in its mission sets, its units' locations and names, and its mindsets - they all changed to reflect a more expeditionary, warrior focus," he said.
Another related change Ham remarked on was the emphasis of the 21st TSC's mission, which has been adjusted to recognize the same warrior focus.
"This command is composed of Soldiers, civilians and local national employees who understand that at the end of the supply chain there is a Soldier in combat. The word "customer" has been replaced by the word "Soldier" - removing all doubt about the importance of the 21st TSC's mission," he said.
Then Ham complimented and thanked Kathy Fontaine for her community involvement and volunteer work.
"She has been a leader, advisor and friend to the community. With 21st TSC family members located in Germany, Italy, (Belgium, Luxembourg, and the Netherlands), she worked tirelessly to keep family readiness group leaders informed. Kathy was also a champion of Families in numerous U.S. Army Europe, installation management and U.S. Army NATO forums," he said.
Ham pointed out that the Army in Kaiserslautern and its surrounding villages not only benefit from extraordinary host nation support, but also from their co-existence with Air Force and the resultant reciprocal assistance.
Case in point - the music was provided by the U.S. Air Force Europe Band led and conducted by Tech Sgt. Dodd Martin, which performed the musical tribute to Fontaine. Marking representative assignments of Fontaine's career, the band played the songs of the 4th Infantry Division, the 24th Infantry Division, the 82nd Airborne Division, the 1st Corps Support Command, the 21st TSC and the Army Song.