Sunday, February 26, 2012

Battalion Commander LTC Rhett Walker

We had a grand winter trip planned beginning with Ft Bragg, NC for Rhett’s (son) change of command ceremony, then to the Baltimore area for our first visit with Eric (son) and family in their new home, and were considering a swing thru WV to visit with my family there.  The day before we left, Eric called to advise his family was coming down with a cold and we aborted everything but Ft. Bragg – over one day and back the next.

The change of command ceremony is a 200 year old army tradition and we’d been at his other two, both as a company commander, but becoming a battalion commander is a big deal and this ceremony included a marching band and several generals.

His battalion contains 1100 folks and this is some of them in formation along with the 82nd Airborne’s marching band.

Before the ceremony, I got a shot of Rhett with the XVIII Airborne Corp Commander, Lt.General Frank Helmick.

This is Rhett and the outgoing commander reviewing the troops.

This is change of command where the boss, XVIII Chief of Staff, Brig General Mike Garrett, takes the battalion guidon from the outgoing commander and passes it to Rhett, as the incoming commander.  Battalion commanders generally work for a colonel, but this is a unique situation in that his boss is a one star and his senior rater is a three star.

Gen. Garrett and Rhett making their remarks and a final shot of the troops.

I failed to get any shots, but the previous night we went to Luigi’s Italian Restaurant and had a great meal.  Not only was the food good, but we had, perhaps, the best server ever – attentive, efficient, and a super personality.  If you’re ever in the Fayetteville area and like Italian, you should give it a try.

All photos can be enlarged by clicking on them.

Have a great day and thanks for stopping by Almost Heaven South.



  1. The ceremony is very impressive Larry. I know you must be very proud of Rhett. I can see the family resemblance. For some reason Ft. Bragg sounds familiar to me and I think my dad might have passed through there before I was born during the war before he ended up in the Philippines.

    The personality and efficiency of a server can sure make or break a meal.

  2. That is impressive and you must be beaming with pride!

  3. I can imagine how proud you were, Larry. I remember how I felt when my grandson graduated from Marine basic training. I get a lump in my throat just thinking about it.

  4. That reminds me of when my brother graduated from Ft. Jackson in SC

  5. I know you and Bev are proud parents. His service is appreciated by all of us.

  6. You must be very proud of Rhett. I enjoyed your pictures very much.

  7. How great that you got to see your son Rhett --at this special ceremony..Too bad that the other part of the trip didn't work out but maybe you can get there soon...

    I know you are so very proud of Rhett... Great achievement..

  8. Larry & Bev, Nice photos of Rett and the change of command ceremony! Our congratulations on Rett's official takeover of the battalion... I've added Luigi's to our list of restaurants for North Carolina. Take Care, Big Daddy Dave and Laurie

  9. Luigi's may have been good, but Rhett was the really important part of the trip. My hat's off to you and Bev for raising such a fine son.

  10. This is so wonderful, Larry. He has earned every bit of this promotion and I know y'all could not be prouder.


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