MANNHEIM, Germany -- The Army Field Support Battalion - Mannheim welcomed a new commander while bidding farewell to its predecessor during a change of command ceremony here, July 2.

Lt. Col. Scott Boyington relinquished command to Lt. Col. Jason Knapp after 14 months as a battalion commander. Col. Grant L. Morris, commander 405th Army Field Support Brigade, the battalion's higher headquarters, presided over the ceremony.

Morris highlighted the outgoing commander's contribution to the brigade's mission in Europe and thanked him for his efforts.

"AFSBn-Mannheim has been one of the busiest prepositioned equipment sites in the Army," said Morris.
"They have supported some of USAREUR's (U.S. Army Europe) most critical missions, including Army Forces Command's first emergency deployment readiness exercise of a heavy brigade to Europe since 1992 and Lt. Col. Scott Boyington led the battalion through this time of high OPTEMPO and new major missions."

Boyington led the battalion through five equipment configuration and handoff area missions, moving equipment from the brigade's industrial base, either by road or rail, setting it up in an austere location, and issuing it to tactical Army units. Over the past year, the battalion issued and took back more than 470 pieces of rolling stock items and currently manages and maintains over 65,000 pieces of equipment.

APS is a U.S. Department of the Army program in which equipment sets are stored around the globe for use when a combatant commander requires additional capabilities. The APS stored in Europe is designated APS-2. The APS-2 sites are part of the European Reassurance Initiative to enable NATO rapid deterrence options.

AFSBn-Mannheim provides mission command of APS operations at Coleman Worksite in Mannheim, Germany and Duelmen, Germany. Charged with providing and coordinating the receipt, transfer, storage, and maintenance of APS, the battalion enables commanders to conduct unified actions and the full range of military operations in support of U.S. Army Europe.

"Every day, this battalion contributes significantly to the 21st TSC (Theater Sustainment Command) efforts to set the theater, here in Europe - providing tangible readiness to the warfighter, developing new tactics, techniques, and procedures to issue APS, at nearly no notice, and anywhere Soldiers need to have it issued," said Morris. "They are an integral part of the USAREUR team and critical to mission success."

After honoring the host nation and the United States, Boyington handed the colors to Morris, signifying the end of his command. The brigade commander passed the colors on to Knapp, marking the beginning of the battalion's new command.

Boyington attributed much of the battalion's accomplishments to his battalion team. "I could not have been successful without key personnel to assist me in achieving this endeavor. I want to take the time to personally thank all of those who I believe were key to this success," said Boyington. "Because of our mission here in Germany, and how important it is in the global scene we are part of, I want to quote George Washington: 'To be prepared for war is one of the most effective means of preserving peace.' "

Knapp and his wife are well acquainted with Europe. The incoming commander comes from U.S. Army Europe, where he served as a logistics planner in G4. "He (Lt. Col. Jason Knapp) has great understanding of the 405th (AFSB) mission and operations and the leadership ability and experience needed to head up Battalion Mannheim," said Morris.

In his speech, Knapp thanked his senior leaders, wife and outgoing command team. "During my time in USAREUR, I've watched the enormity this battalion has accomplished," said Knapp. "It is truly an honor and privilege to be here today as the new commander for AFSBn-Mannheim. I am humbled to be a part of this team and share in all the amazing things this battalion will do."