AL TAQADDUM, Iraq --
The 2nd Marine Logistics Group (Forward) handed over its area of operations to 1st Marine Logistics Group during a transfer of authority ceremony here, Feb. 7.
“This global war on terrorism has frequently been described as a marathon not a sprint,” said Brig. Gen James A. Kessler, commanding general of 2nd MLG (Fwd). “I also believe it is a relay race, and today we are handing off the baton to our teammates.”
Brig. Gen. Robert R. Ruark, commanding general of the 1st MLG, based out of Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, Calif., is taking hold of the baton and leading his Marines to victory while 2nd MLG “cheers them on from the sidelines.”
“I have great confidence in saying that they are ready to take over and I’m sure they’re chomping at the bit waiting for us to get out of the way, just like we were when we first got here,” Kessler said.
The 2nd MLG has been in Iraq since last January when they took control of Camp Al Taqaddum. Kessler and his Marines will be headed back home to the East Coast while the West Coast takes control of the area, aiming to gain victory through logistics, as their motto states.
Throughout the year, 2nd MLG has seen many changes and supported every major operation in the battlespace, roughly the same the size as their home state of North Carolina. They also saw their Iraqi partners assume many responsibilities once held by American Forces.
“It’s been a pleasure to watch them grow, and I am able to hand the battle space over to them with great confidence,” Kessler said.
The 1st MLG is stepping up to fill their boots and will continue the support of Marines in the fight throughout Al Anbar Province.
“We have big shoes to fill but we have been trained well and guided well by the capable hands of the 2nd Marine Logistics Group,” Ruark said. “We look forward to the challenges ahead and we are ready to assume the watch.”