New commander takes reigns at Albany base - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

New commander takes reigns at Albany base

June 17, 2005

Albany- An eleven gun salute honored Brigadier General Eugene Payne as he got ready to say good-bye to MCLB-Albany.

Payne led the base through an uncertain time as the Pentagon came up with its base closure list. He says the community worked hard to protect the base because it's so important to the region's economy.

"But also because of a possessiveness, an ownership, if you will, of their Marines here in the Albany area," he said.

Payne commanded the base for more than 7 months after Major General Harold Mashburn passed away last November. He will take command over the fourth For Service Command Group headquartered in New Orleans.

With the transfer of the colors, Payne passed the command to Major General Willie Williams.

Williams will be over the Albany base, MCLB-Barstow, the maintenance centers at each base and Blount Island Command in Jacksonville, Fla.

"This command is a very important command," Williams said. "It is doing great things for our nation."

Like building and repairing equipment that keeps Marines safe, and often alive, as they fight in Iraq.

"We send men and women into battle each and every day and their lives depend on the equipment that we provide them and the ability of that equipment to do what it was designed to do," he said. "My focus, of course, will be war fighting and war-fighting readiness."

Friday, the focus was for the Marine Corps Logistics Base to welcome a new leader as they continue on in their mission.

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