By Amy Guckeen TolsonJuly 22, 2014
REDSTONE ARSENAL, Ala. -- Commanders at Fox Army Health Center may come and go, but one thing remains the same -- their commitment to "serving to heal, honored to serve."
Fox Army Health Center staff, together with Team Redstone, celebrated the medical treatment facility's past, present and future commitment to wellness and the war fighter, as Col. William Darby relinquished command to Col. David Carpenter.
Maj. Gen. Jimmie Keenan, commander of the Southern Regional Medical Command, conducted the ceremony Thursday in Bob Jones Auditorium.
"Readiness, taking care of our families and America's sons and daughters is what we do every day here at Fox, and they've done it very, very well for many years," Keenan said. "One of the reasons that they have continued to do it so well is because we've been fortunate to have phenomenal leaders here."
Darby's command can be measured not only in days, but in the more than 70,000 primary care visits performed by his staff over the past two years and the 600,000-plus prescriptions filled in Fox's pharmacy. Fox consistently ranks at the top when it comes to quality patient care and satisfaction, Keenan said, a legacy that Darby continued throughout his command, and that Carpenter promised to maintain.
"To Team Fox, the Fox family, to Team Redstone, Huntsville, Madison and surrounding communities, you have my pledge to uphold the reputation and history of this distinguished organization," Carpenter said. "Thank you for the support that you continue to give our war fighters, their families and this great nation. It is communities and organizations like this that I am serving to heal and honored to serve."
Carpenter comes to Fox from Fort Shafter, Hawaii, where he served as the deputy G3, 18th Medical Command.
"He is a phenomenal leader," Keenan said of Carpenter. "When we talk about what leadership is, and the individuals that we select for command, we are looking at them not as a medical service corps officers, a nurse, a physician, we are looking for that leader. I promise we have delivered with Dave Carpenter. He is the best leader to replace Bill Darby. Dave, we know you're going to do an outstanding job."
Beginning in August, Darby's next assignment is military deputy to the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army for Environment, Safety and Occupational Health at the Pentagon.
"To sum up the way I feel today is humbled. Humbled that I was given the opportunity to command at this level," Darby said.