Gen. Michael X. Garrett, commander of U.S. Army Forces Command, passes the I Corps colors to Lt. Gen. Xavier T. Brunson during an assumption of command ceremony at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash., Oct. 6, 2021. Following a promotion, Brunson assumed command of America’s First Corps and JBLM.
Gen. Michael X. Garrett, commander of U.S. Army Forces Command, passes the I Corps colors to Lt. Gen. Xavier T. Brunson during an assumption of command ceremony at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash., Oct. 6, 2021. Following a promotion, Brunson assumed command of America’s First Corps and JBLM. (Photo Credit: Staff Sgt. Kyle Larsen) VIEW ORIGINAL

JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Washington — Following a promotion, Lt. Gen. Xavier T. Brunson assumed command of America’s First Corps and Joint Base Lewis-McChord, during a ceremony at I Corps Headquarters, Oct. 6, 2021.

Bruson’s predecessor, Lt. Gen. Randy George, relinquished command of I Corps in June, after being selected to become the Senior Military Assistant for the Secretary of Defense. Brunson, then the deputy commanding general, assumed Corps commander duties and responsibilities upon George’s departure.

“When I handed [Brunson] these colors in June, I trusted him to command I Corps just the same as I trust him now,” said Gen. Michael X. Garrett, commander of U.S. Army Forces Command, who presided over Brunson’s promotion and assumption of command ceremony. “[Today], I am honored to formally recognize Lt. Gen. Brunson’s command of one of the nation’s strategic workhorses for the Indo-Pacific region.

“Lt. Gen. Xavier Brunson is the right leader for this organization,” continued Garrett. “His expertise, relationships and commitment complement this team and its mission.”

Brunson is no stranger to the JBLM team. Prior to his role as the Corps’ deputy commanding general, he commanded the 7th Infantry Division from Aug. 2019 to May 2021.

“Xavier is well known and trusted by leaders and Soldiers across our Army,” said Garrett, who recognized Brunson’s extensive military service, which includes six combat deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan. “And, in the brief periods that he has not spent leading Soldiers in combat, he has been training Soldiers for combat, which is why I find great comfort in knowing that Xavier Brunson is at the helm of I Corps, making sure that this team stays ready for its many important missions.”

Brunson acknowledged the Corps’ importance to the Indo-Pacific region and said that both people and the mission were at the forefront of his priorities as the Corps’ commander.

“It is my plan, it is my intent, and it is my desire, that I be visible not only to our community and our partners, therein, but also to the Soldiers of America’s First Corps,” said Brunson. “People are our most important resource. Their time, their treasure and their families are important to me, because it’s important to my team. It’s important that I be the example they can look to.

“We have ‘no fail’ missions in the Indo-Pacific region,” continued Brunson. “Our adversary, there, is incrementally insidious, and we have to meet that threat. That means we’ve got to be trained, we have to train hard, we have to train well, we have to have standards, and we have to meet those standards, every day.”

Brunson said that the installation, JBLM, was equally important to its people and their mission.

“This installation is a power projection platform, whether we’re projecting our Soldiers out to the surrounding communities, where we expect them to be good citizens, or we’re going across the world to meet with the adversaries and enemies of our nation.”

Garrett said JBLM is an “exciting, meaningful and memorable place to be an Army leader at any level – from Corps commander to squad leader.” During the ceremony, the FORSCOM commander took the time to remind the audience of the U.S. Army’s ultimate mission.

“We exist for one reason,” said Garrett, “We exist to fight and to win our nation’s wars. In Xavier, we are promoting an officer who has spent his career as close as possible to the fight, and he is ready to prepare our forces for the next one, if ever and whenever it comes.”