by Spc. Khori D. Johnson
3rd Brigade Combat Team Public Affairs Office, 4th Infantry Division
On the parade grounds of Manhart Field, the 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, conducted its change of command ceremony at Fort Carson June 22.
The ceremony signified the exchange of authority over the “Iron” Brigade from Col. James E. Rainey to Col. Michael C. Kasales.
Rainey commanded the Iron Brigade for the last two years and has led them through a rigorous training schedule, successful deployment and efficient reintegration.
During his farewell speech, he credited the success of the brigade to its command staff, battalion and company leadership, noncommissioned officer corps and most importantly, every hard-working Soldier in the brigade.
“Every military accomplishment is ultimately because of the blood, sweat and tears of the fighting man or woman,” he said. “You are the greatest Soldiers our nation has ever fielded — period.”
Kasales, who has been stationed at various posts nationwide, is looking forward to settling in Colorado Springs and compares it to the story of Goldilocks.
“My wife and I have spent the last four years in Fort Wainwright, Alaska, and Fort Irwin, Calif.,” he said. “This one was too hot and this one was too cold. Now, we’ve come to Fort Carson and it’s just right.”
During the previous command, Rainey held a number of things in high regard, such as safety, resiliency and teamwork. Kasales intends to carry on in this manner, with a special emphasis on Family.
Kasales said the Army places emphasis on the importance of Family and he plans to focus on that aspect. He believes that a unit’s strength in Family is equal to, if not more important than, its combat power.
Toward the end of Rainey’s farewell speech, he displayed good faith in the future ongoing successes of the Iron Brigade.
“This (brigade combat team) was a great unit when I took command two years ago and it has answered to the call of war four times since 2003,” he said. “It’s going to meet whatever challenges it faces in the future, and it’s going to win there too.”