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Feature Stories

NEWS | Aug. 17, 2018

Area Support Group Qatar Change of Command

By Capt. Braden Shoenlein U.S. Army Central

The United States Army’s change of command ceremony is one steeped in tradition and symbolism. A descendant unit from U.S. Army George S. Patton’s Third Army, Area Support Group Qatar participated in such a tradition as U.S. Army Capt. Rawlene Grandison relinquished command of the Headquarters Company (HHC) to U.S. Army Capt. Filiberto Pacheco on July 31, 2018.

The mission of the ASG-QA is to conduct mission command at Camp As-Sayliyah and other areas in the U.S. Central Command area of operation in order to support ongoing operations and enable U.S. Army Central partnerships.

While change of commands are typically held outside, the stifling heat of the Qatari desert prompted the ceremony for HHC to be held indoors. The indoor setting, however, did not detract from the bittersweet sentiment that seems to always accompany such events. The ceremony transpired in traditional fashion, commencing with the national anthem and the invocation given by the chaplain.

Grandison was endearing in her farewell remarks, emphasizing that the members of the great team behind her deserve all the credit for the past year’s accomplishments.

“My inspiration throughout my command has been my Soldiers who have accomplished every mission thrown at them.” said Grandison. She looks forward to reuniting with her two children back stateside as they make the move to Fort Bliss, Texas.

Pacheco exuded confidence and eagerness in his first remarks as the commander of HHC ASG-QA. “I’m excited for the opportunity to take command in this organization.” said Pacheco. His last assignment was at the Infantry Captain’s Career Course at Fort Benning, Georgia. His wife and two sons remain stateside and awaiting his return from this assignment.

The ceremony achieved its purpose in echoing the sentiments of previous change of commands—sentiments of tradition, patriotism, farewells, and new beginnings.