FORT WAINWRIGHT, Alaska - Col. Sidney C. "Cape" Zemp took charge of the United States Army Garrison Fort Wainwright in a ceremony at the Physical Fitness Center on post Dec. 6. Debra Zedalis, Installation Management Command Pacific Region director, passed the Fort Wainwright garrison flag to Zemp at the beginning of the ceremony, signifying the transfer of command and responsibility for the garrison.

This is Zemp's first time in Alaska. "When I drove on post Monday [Dec. 2] and looked at the hospital sign flashing 22 degrees below zero, I realized the song playing on the radio was Joe Nichols' "Sunny and 75" and briefly thought about being in a beach chair somewhere, but I don't have time for beach chairs right now. We have some good work to do."

Zemp is married with three children. For now they will remain in Virginia while his middle daughter finishes her senior year in high school. During his speech he spoke about how excited he and his Family were to come to Alaska and joked that his wife's education about the state has "come disproportionately from Alaska reality shows." He said, "She already has an Alaska bucket list and we're looking forward to exploring the state."

Zemp's duties as garrison command include overseeing the services and training space used by 14,000 Soldiers, DoD civilians and military Families. "The first thing I'll do is make an assessment," he said. "I'll be listening. I'm new to Alaska. I'm new to the garrison. Taking it all in will be my first priority."

Originally from Hampton Roads, Va. Zemp is a former tank commander and a veteran of Operation Desert Shield, Desert Storm and more recently Operation Iraqi Freedom. His last post was as assistant chief of staff for the U.S. Army Intelligence and Security Command, Fort Belvoir, Va.