By Nancy Gould, Hunter Army Airfield Public AffairsMarch 25, 2010
SAVANNAH, Ga. - The change of command for the 1st Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment took place beneath the moss-draped trees of Forsyth Park in Savannah, March 18.
Dignitaries, guests and those passing by watched as the outgoing commander, Col. Brian Mennes, turned over his command to Lt. Col. Michael Foster during the colorful ceremony.
Colonel Mennes has deployed twice since taking command of the battalion on July 1, 2008. He said that leaving his Family of Rangers was a bittersweet transition for him and his wife and children.
"This is the best job in the world in one of the best towns in the world," he said.
He also acknowledged great things ahead in his new job as a brigade commander at Fort Bragg, N.C.
"It's a great day to move forward, but it's been a joy to serve with these men," he said. "They define what selfless service looks like. My only regret is that I didn't have more time to spend with them."
Now the opportunity to spend time with the Rangers belongs to the battalion's new commander, Lt. Col. Foster.
"I've looked forward to this command; it feels great to be here," said the new commander, about living and serving in the Savannah area and living near his Family in Stone Mountain, Ga.
Most recently, Lt. Col. Foster served in the 82nd Airborne Division at Fort Bragg as the commander of the 1st Squadron, 73rd Cavalry Regiment. Prior to that, he served in the Joint Special Operations Command directing a Joint Interagency Task Force.
"I've never experienced anything like this before," he said about Savannah. "I've only been here one week and community leaders have already contacted me, welcoming me here."
Other leaders at Hunter Army Airfield, where the 1st Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment is based were on-hand at Forsyth Park to welcome Lt. Col. Foster to the community.
"We're a Family," said Lt. Col. Kirk Keepers, commander of the 3rd Battalion, 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment, whose aviators work closely with the Rangers. "Our Family includes special operations units and the entire Hunter community. We all work together jointly to accomplish the mission."