FORT BELVOIR, Va. -- The 911th Technical Rescue Engineering Company changed leadership during a ceremony May 23 at Davison Army Airfield.
Capt. Michael Riccitiello III assumed command of the 911th from Capt. Langston J. Turner.
Riccitiello assumes command after spending 18 months at the U.S. Army Air Operations Group at Fort Myer, Va. as a brigade engineer. Riccitiello expects the Soldiers of the 911th to maintain the same discipline and positive attitude they've had under Turner's leadership.
"A disciplined unit is a unit that trains effectively and is prepared to handle its mission," said Riccitiello. "I also want the Soldiers to have a good attitude about coming to work. You can have a disciplined Soldier, but if he has a bad attitude it makes the work environment rough on everybody else."
Having worked closely with the 911th during his time with USAAOG, Riccitiello is excited to take command since he is already aware of the professionalism and determination the Soldiers of the company possess.
"They have a lot of hard-chargers, a lot of great noncommissioned officers," said Riccitiello. "I see a lot of the lower enlisted that are excited to be here. It's a prestigious company, so the opportunity to be here is a great chance for some of them to do something unique."
After completing the Engineer Captain's Career Course at Fort Leonard Wood, Mo. Riccitiello applied for the position of 911th commander without knowing much about the unit's history. After some research and learning the unit is the only active-duty technical rescue company in the Army, the challenge-oriented Riccitiello knew he made the right decision.
"I've always been up for a challenge," said Riccitiello. "So, because they only need a commander so often, I knew it was a once in a lifetime opportunity."
Since the 911th has a specific mission, Riccitiello knows he is teaching Soldiers skills they don't have when they arrive in the unit. Teaching Soldiers those new skills is one of the challenges he is most looking forward to.
"You're not going to get a staff sergeant who's done this for the last 10 years," said Riccitiello. "You have to train the Soldiers in the unit to do what the unit does. It's a fun challenge I'm looking forward to."
Lt. Col. Reed G. Erickson, 12th Aviation Battalion, commander gave opening remarks. Erickson praised Riccitiello and Turner as exceptional officers and feels the unit's transition from Turner to Riccitiello will go well.
"(Riccitiello) is an extremely capable officer," said Erickson. "He is a perfect fit for the 911th."
Turner moves to an assignment at the Pentagon he is excited about because it's another step in his career development, according to Turner.
Despite his excitement for a new challenge, he is sad to leave the 911th.
"I'm leaving the guys I've been with the last two years," said Turner. "I've seen some things flourish that weren't here before my command. But, it's sweet because I'm moving to a new assignment with new challenges, new people, and it's career development. That's what the military is about."