21st TSC changes command

Joe Monchecourt
21st Theater Support Command

***image1***The 21st Theater Support Command’s two-year “feel-good” era ended with
some feel-great flair as Maj. Gen. Bennie E. Williams passed the reigns
of leadership to Brig. Gen. Scott G. West during a Sept. 1 change of
command on the sports field at Daenner Kaserne in

General Williams, known for liberally using the expression, “I feel
good,” in his constant public praise of 21st TSC accomplishments and
missions, had the tables turned on him somewhat during the change of
command ceremony.

This time it was United States Army Europe and 7th Army Commander
General B.B. Bell borrowing the lyrics of the old James Brown tune in
showering General Williams with accolades for a job well-done as a

“I had the honor of passing the 21st TSC colors to Maj. Gen. Bennie
Williams when he took command back in 2003. “I’d like to say that was a
turbulent time early in Operation Iraqi Freedom,’’ General Bell said,
as he went into detail describing a number of missions the 21st TSC has
accomplished and is currently assuming in Iraq and Afghanistan.

“I will never forget his words right here on this field when he stated
and quoted words of that great American poet James Brown, ‘I feel
good,’ and he hasn’t changed his mind since. Bennie has a passion for
this business and he loves his most precious commodity, our Soldiers
and their families,” Bell told a crowd of some 800 guests, which
included Soldiers, civilians, family members and friends, dignitaries,
distinguished local officials as well as officers and Soldiers from
other branches of the service and other nations.

“Bennie’s leadership has just been incredible … you have a leader who
puts the well-being of Soldiers, civilians and family at the very top
of his list. His concern is clearly evident for all members of this
community as well as our great German local national employees, whose
efforts with us our so vital,” General Bell said.

General Williams – who has spent the past five years at the 21st TSC,
three years as the deputy commanding general and the past two years as
the commanding general – found himself deluged in compliments at the
ceremony, yet he remained true to form by thanking those around him,
especially his wife and family for their relentless support.

“For the past five years, all the great things we’ve done together,
this just makes today all the more satisfying,” General Williams said,
summing up the numerous challenges he issued back when he assumed
command of the 21st – battle readiness, the capability to go to war
mentality throughout the command with an emphasis on Soldier readiness,
the capability to rapidly deploy, to provide responsive technical and
tactical combat service support and survive on the battlefield.

“Well, the Soldiers of the 21st Theater Support Command heard me, and
they delivered,” General Williams said. “My command’s sergeant majors
heard me, and they delivered. My officers heard me, and they delivered.
So on behalf of United States Army Europe and a grateful nation, I
personally thank you.”

General Williams went on to list some of the 21st TSC’s
accomplishments, to include fort-to-port operations for V Corps, 1st
Infantry Division, 1st Artillery Division, Southern European Task
Force, as well as the port-to-fort operations, reconstitution and the
daily operational logistic requirements for USAREUR.

“As I said, when I first took this command, ‘I feel good,’ and as I
reflect back on the numerous successes this command has achieved over
the past five years and the great things that these super Soldiers and
civilians will continue to do, give me more reasons to feel good about
having had the opportunity to command this fantastic outfit,” General
Williams said.      

General Williams is heading to Ft. Belvoir, Va., where he has been
named director of logistics operations at the Defense Logistics Agency.

Coincidentally, Brig. Gen. West’s last duty assignment was in Virginia,
where he was the commanding general of the U.S. Army Quartermaster
Center and School and deputy commanding general of Fort Lee. Adding
some more irony, General West was replaced at Fort Lee by former 21st
TSC deputy commanding general, Brig. Gen. Mark A. Bellini.
General West kept his comments short at the 21st TSC’s change of command.

“I want to pledge to the men and women to continue the leadership that
you so deserve and have grown accustomed to under General Williams,”
General West said, adding that he was “honored” to have been given this

During the Aug. 11 change of command at Fort Lee, General West said he
was looking forward to his assignment as the commanding general of the
21st TSC.

“It’s really all about people,” General West said at the time. “I get
to take command of a theater support command, which is populated by a
lot of the Soldiers we trained right here. So I get to see the process
at the warfighting end, to experience commanding Soldiers who are a
production of this schoolhouse. What can be better than to go now,
after giving a role in developing these Soldiers, and then command them
in the warfighting world?”