FORT MYER, Va. (Army News Service, Nov. 3, 2009) -- Installation Management Command said farewell to its first commanding general Monday and welcomed Lt. Gen. Rick Lynch as its new commander.

In a ceremony held at Fort Myer's Conmy Hall, Wilson said farewell to the command he had presided over since its inception in October 2006, and passed the reins to a commander who is ready to take on the challenges of "the Army's home."

Along with being IMCOM commander, Lynch also takes the title of the Army's assistant chief of staff for Installation Management, or ACSIM.

Soldiers from the U.S. Army Band "Pershing's Own" played a brief pre-ceremony concert, featuring "Army Strong" by Mark Isham and "Black Jack" by F.K. Huffer, among others.

Soldiers of the 3rd U.S. Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard), including the Commander in Chief's Guard, the Continental Color Guard and The Old Guard Fife and Drum Corps, also participated in the ceremony.

After the units sounded off and fixed bayonets, Col. David Anders, regimental commander of The Old Guard and commander of troops for the ceremony, escorted Wilson on his final inspection of the troops.

After Pershing's Own played the national anthem, command was officially changed, with Lynch and Command Sgt. Maj. Neil Ciotola receiving the IMCOM guidon from Wilson and outgoing IMCOM Command Sgt. Maj. John Gaines.

Army Chief of Staff Gen. George W. Casey Jr. served as host for the event. He took the podium first to thank Wilson for his almost four decades of service, and to welcome Lynch to the position.

"Rick is a proven leader, and he has the vision and the drive to continue the transformation of our installations, so that they best support our Army," Casey said.

When Lynch took the stage, he spoke of the Army as not just a job, not just a profession, but a passion.

"At some point in your career, that profession changes into a passion. A passion to prepare for and execute our nation's wars in defense of our nation's freedom, and a passion to truly take care of our Soldiers and their families," Lynch said.

He also credited Wilson for going above and beyond in his briefings about the position, saying, "I had all the right briefings, I had all the right conversations ... I'm [very] thankful for that."

Lynch comes to IMCOM after commanding III Corps and Fort Hood, Texas. He has also served as commander of the 3rd Infantry Division, deputy chief of staff for Operations at Allied Joint Force Command-Naples, and deputy chief of staff for Strategic Effects for Multi-National Force-Iraq.

His awards and decorations include the Distinguished Service Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, the Defense Superior Service Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, the Legion of Merit with Oak Leaf Cluster, the Bronze Star with Oak Leaf Cluster, the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Joint Service Commendation Medal and Army Achievement Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster.

(Alex McVeigh writes for the Pentagram newspaper at Fort Myer, Va.)