Maj Gen. Barclay bids Fort Rucker farewell
August 20, 2010
FORT RUCKER, Ala. -- Post officials, friends and Family members came out to say goodbye to Maj. Gen. James O. Barclay III, former U.S. Army Aviation Center of Excellence and Fort Rucker commanding general, at a farewell dinner at The Landing Aug. 13.
Barclay said his time at Fort Rucker was the best two years of his life and he and his wife, Debbie, would visit as soon as possible.
"As I look back on my career there are only a couple of times in my life where I truly had fun and this was one of them," Barclay said. "There have been hard days and it's been a lot of hard work, but at the end it was a great run and a true honor for me to be part of what this community does. We'll be back here as soon as the Army will allow us. We've had a tremendous ride."
Barclay added he wouldn't have been able to lead as effectively if it hadn't been for the help of the surrounding communities and the other members of the post leadership.
"You're the ones who make it happen every day," Barclay told the dinner attendees. "I'll never claim anything that's happened over the last two years as an individual. I know you'll continue to do what you've been doing for the last ten years or longer. I know you'll keep Fort Rucker on the right path."
Several post officials remarked on their time with Barclay here and what he and his wife have meant to them and the installation.
"(Barclay) is a true native son of Alabama," Col. Anthony Krogh, director of simulation, said. "He quickly established that he was going to be the steward of this post and its natural resources. He said it was all about being good neighbors to the surrounding communities."
In addition to a dinner and videos thanking Maj. Gen. and Mrs. Barclay for their service, some post officials decided to perform a "roast" of the Barclays. Barclay's abilities as a "possum hunter" and his avid love of Ohio State football were all revealed to those in attendance.
Barclay relinquished command to Brig. Gen. Anthony G. Crutchfield, Director of the Joint Center of Operational Analysis-Lessons Learned, U.S. Joint Forces Command, Suffolk, Va., Aug. 19 at Howze Field during a change of command ceremony.
Barclay's new position is Assistant Deputy Chief of Staff, G-3/5/7, U.S. Army, Washington, D.C.