Secretary of the Army John M. McHugh [left] swears in 33rd Vice Chief of Staff of the Army Gen. Lloyd J. Austin III on Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall, Va., Jan. 31. Photo Credit: Rachel Larue.

The Army welcomed a new vice chief of staff during a swearing-in ceremony for Gen. Lloyd Austin III Jan. 31. John M. McHugh, Secretary of the Army, recited the oath of office for Austin, becoming the 33rd Army vice chief of staff at the ceremony held on Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall.

McHugh thanked Austin for his outstanding service and dedication to the Army.

"I expect Lloyd to continue his leadership and advocacy on behalf of Soldiers and their Families just as he has in virtually every other assignment he's held," said McHugh. "Lloyd Austin has always led from the front, led by example. Not just telling Soldiers, but showing Soldiers the right way. The Army way. The Lloyd Austin way."

After the oath, McHugh presented Austin with the vice chief of staff flag, signifying the assumption of responsibility.

"Lloyd Austin is, as he always has been, a full-spectrum leader. A leader that at every level of command has demonstrated to his troops the right way to lead, the right way to live as a Soldier," said McHugh.

After assuming responsibility, Austin thanked his Family, friends and former leaders. He especially thanked all the Soldiers he's worked with throughout his career. He said the ceremony was just as much about them as it was about him.

"That brings me to our Soldiers," said Austin, "who continue to amaze me with their continued resilience, flexibility and their motivation. They are indeed the fabric of our Army. They've made every seemingly impossible task look easy."

"Most recently in Iraq, they've completed one of the most complex logistics and operational maneuvers in our nation's history," said Austin. "They did it all without incident and they finished ahead of schedule. They did all of this in contact with a determined enemy. I am truly humbled by and thankful for their service and their many sacrifices."

Austin replaces Gen. Peter Chiarelli as the Army vice chief of staff. Chiarelli retired from the Army after 40 years of service in a ceremony earlier in the day at Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall.

Page last updated Fri February 3rd, 2012 at 08:04