FORT BUCHANAN, Puerto Rico - Soldiers, civilians, family members and friends gathered at the 1st Mission Support Command (1st MSC), U.S. Army Reserve-Puerto Rico headquarters, to witness the promotion ceremony of Lt. Col. Julia Diaz-Rex, the 1st MSC's staff judge advocate, to the rank of colonel, Jan. 11.Brig. Gen. Jose R. Burgos, 1st MSC commanding general, presided over the ceremony."What Julia (Diaz-Rex) accomplished today is the result of many years of dedication, hard work, blood and tears. Not everybody can reach the rank of colonel in the U.S. Army," said Burgos, while recognizing the professional advice provided by Diaz-Rex as a member of the 1st MSC staff.Shortly after her parents pinned the new rank on Diaz-Rex's shoulders, the officer addressed the audience."This has been a blessing for me. When I first came in the service, in 1995, I did not think that I would ever get to the rank of colonel. I want to thank my family because they understood that I wanted to serve our country, which is one of the most important things to do. I am privileged that I have been given this opportunity. Mom and Dad, thanks for your undivided support," said Diaz-Rex.The new colonel also recognized the help of the non-commissioned officers throughout her career."In every rank that I ever had, I realized that the one thing a senior leader always needs is the noncommissioned officer corps (NCO's). Without the NCO's I would not be here today," added Diaz-Rex, who is also an assistant attorney at the U.S. Attorney's office in San Juan.Diaz-Rex is a judge advocate general officer with over 19 years of military service.