By Sgt. Ricardo Branch, 8th Theater Sustainment Command Public Affairs OfficeJuly 29, 2009
FORT SHAFTER, Hawaii (July 29, 2009) -Soldiers of the 8th Theater Sustainment Command paid tribute to their departing commander and welcomed their new commander in a ceremony on historic Palm Circle here Wednesday.
Brig. Gen. Michael Terry assumed command of the 8th TSC, and Maj. Gen. Raymond Mason, who commanded the past two years, left Fort Shafter to assume the role of the G4 at the U.S. Army Forces Command, headquartered at Fort McPherson, in Ga.
"We depart the 8th TSC and our adopted home of Hawaii fully confident as we turn over this awesome team to Mike and Cathy Terry - the Sustain the Force family is truly in great hands," Mason said.
Mason has a history of service in Hawaii, which first started for him at the 25th Infantry Division Support Command, then, following many assignments, he returned to the island in 2007 to command the 8th TSC.
"We are truly blessed that the Army gave us a second opportunity to serve in this paradise," he said. "Standing in the same ranks as the men and women of the 8th TSC has been my greatest honor and privilege. This TSC team of teams, that is only a little over three years in existence, is a magnificent outfit where no mission is too tough for these professional Soldiers."
Mason ended his speech by thanking the troops and families witnessing the transfer of command.
"Words alone cannot do justice to the breadth of the gracious feelings Patti and I have for each of you," he said. "We can only say from our heart - thank you so much for your inspiring selfless service and may God Bless each of you and your loved ones."
Following Mason\'s remarks, Terry took the stand to speak to the audience.
"My first assignment was with the 25th Infantry Division and though it's taken nearly 30 years to be reassigned to Hawaii, my family and I are thrilled to be here," he said. "I'm committed to continuing the legacy established by Major General Mason and Patti by doing my very best to take care of Soldiers, their families, and the many civilians and department of the Army officials vital to our mission here."
Terry went on to thank Mason for his guidance and hospitality in getting him and his family settled into life on the island.
"Thank you so much for your leadership of the 8th and for the kindness you've shown Cathy, the kids, and me during this transition," Terry said. "You truly set the bar high and made this move very easy for us."
Toward the end of the ceremony, Terry spoke to his new team gathered before him on the field.
"To the Soldiers, you have my commitment that I am dedicated to ensuring you are prepared for combat, that the families ... are taken care of, and that the reintegration of troops coming back home and rejoining families is done right," he said. "May God continue to bless the United States of America and the U.S. Army, and particularly those Soldiers in harm's way and their families eagerly awaiting their return - Sustain the Force, mahalo."