By Nathan Pfau, Army Flier Staff WriterJuly 20, 2017
FORT RUCKER, Ala. -- Fort Rucker welcomed a new garrison commander as Col. Brian E. Walsh assumed command during a ceremony at the U.S. Army Aviation Museum July 12.
Walsh assumed command from Col. Shannon T. Miller as he accepted the garrison colors from Vincent E. Grewatz, U.S. Army Installation Management Command Training director, symbolizing his assumption of command.
Maj. Gen. William K. Gayler, commanding general of the U.S. Army Aviation Center of Excellence and Fort Rucker, welcomed Walsh and provided his full vote of confidence in the new command team while also thanking Miller for her dedicated service as the garrison commander.
"The commitment of our work force inside the garrison led by Shannon Miller has been simply superb. When you look at all of the things that have gotten better overtime, be that involved in something for a family or infrastructure, it is pretty phenomenal," said the commanding general. "We are very proud of you and we wish you very well as you head off into the future.
"But our Army is an amazing body. When we say farewell to one, we always bring in an equally talented person -- and today is no exception," continued Gayler. "Our Army is truly blessed to have a great command team with Jennifer and Brian coming back in -- and to your entire family, welcome to a new role."
Walsh entered military service when he was commissioned into the Army upon graduation from the University of Central Florida in 1994. He is no stranger to Fort Rucker having gone through the Aviation Officer Basic Course and flight school here on Fort Rucker, and comes into command from his most recent role as the director of Training and Doctrine on the installation.
He's served in numerous assignments and leadership positions, from platoon leader and company executive officer for the 4th Battalion, 159th Aviation Regiment in Fort Bragg, North Carolina; and battalion S3, executive officer and brigade S3 for the 3rd Combat Aviation Brigade at Hunter Army Airfield, Georgia; to battalion commander of the 2-2nd Assault Helicopter Battalion in Seoul, South Korea; and senior Aviation trainer at Hohenfels, Germany.
Walsh as served in multiple deployments across many continents, including Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2005.
"It's truly an honor and a privilege to be entrusted with the responsibility of continuing to make this place better for our Soldiers and their families," said the garrison commander. "Fort Rucker is a unique place and we produce the finest Aviation Soldiers in the world, bar none. I'm excited to take command today, and I look forward to finding opportunity where we find challenges and roadblocks.
"Jen and I feel like we're coming back home. The folks who work on this post, the civilians, the Soldiers, the families all stationed here make Fort Rucker a very special place," he said. "Their efforts produce an environment that allows their tenant units to stay focused on the mission. It's a reminder that it's exceptional people that make the difference."
Grewatz expressed his support for the new commander, as well as thanking Miller for everything she accomplished for Fort Rucker.
"We're placing this command in the hands of a very capable couple -- Brian and Jennifer Walsh," he said. "They bring to IMCOM a track record of excellence and a clear passion for mission, people and families -- I can't think of a better couple to lead this team and take it to the next level.
"Changes of command are more about continuity than they are about change," continued Grewatz. "Though we witness the change of garrison leadership today, the Soldiers and civilians of the garrison team will remain engaged doing what they do every day -- continuing to support the [U.S.] Army Aviation Center of Excellence and its mission partners serving the Soldiers and families of Fort Rucker. You can rest assured that this team will not skip a beat as they continue this mission."