MARINE FORCES RESERVE, New Orleans --
Major Gen. John Croley passed the 4th Marine Aircraft Wing’s guidon to Brig. Gen. Rex C. McMillian Aug. 6 symbolizing the exchange of responsibilities as the new commander during a ceremony at Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base in Belle Chasse, La.
Marines of the command, family and friends listened to McMillian while he expressed his excitement about tackling future challenges.
“It’s an honor to be given the opportunity to command the Marines and sailors and to be associated with the families of 4th Marine Aircraft Wing,” said McMillian, formerly the deputy commanding general of I Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Pendleton, Calif. “It’s a tremendous opportunity; one that I don’t take lightly. I say that because 4th MAW is so engaged in our current war and we are faced with challenges in the future.”
Some of the challenges 4th MAW faces, he said, are “being an additive” to the active component in support of Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan as well as preparing the force for current and future threats.
“We have to be light on our feet, adaptable and ready to adjust to changes that may be made across the Marine Corps in the future,” said McMillian. “Those are the challenges I see in the future as we go forward with 4th MAW.”
McMillan’s predecessor, Major Gen. John H. Croley led the command for two years. His next assignment is commander Marine Forces South, and deputy commander of Marine Forces Command.
Croley said his time as the commander flew by quickly and he couldn’t have accomplished anything without the hard-work of the “tremendous” Marines under his wing.
“You can’t be anymore thankful for the great quality of talent we have in this force of almost 9,000 Marines at 4th MAW,” he said. “The caliber of talent we have here is tremendous.”
The 4th MAW, comprised of more than 8,500 personnel stationed throughout the United States, is the air combat element of Marine Forces Reserve. Its mission is to conduct air operations in support of the Fleet Marine Force to include anti-air warfare, offensive air support, assault support, electronic warfare, aerial reconnaissance, control of aircraft and missiles, and as a collateral function, to participate as an integral component of Naval Aviation as directed.