MARINE CORPS BASE HAWAII -- Col. Sean C. Killeen, relinquished command of Marine Corps Base Hawaii to Col. Raul Lianez during a change of command ceremony aboard Marine Corps Air Station Kaneohe Bay, June 23, 2017.
The ceremony was presided by Maj. Gen. Joaquin F. Malavet the commanding general of Marine Corps Installations Pacific.
“Words are important, and I seek to get them right today,” Malavet said. “For Col. ‘Kidd’ Killeen; I consider it a great privilege to honor Kidd - a warrior, an exceptional Marine leader, a true American patriot.”
Malavet also spoke to the credit of the incoming base commander, Lianez, and the important role he will hold as the commander of MCB Hawaii.
“Col. Raul ‘Boogie’ Lianez is exactly the right warrior, at the right command, at the right geographic location, at the exact right time in history,” said Malavet. “This Marine Corps base, this airfield, is our most essential emerging power-projection platform for Marine Air-Ground Task Force operations in Hawaii – our gateway to the Indo-Asia Pacific.”
Among those recognized, the base personnel received special thanks from Killeen during his speech.
“Thank you for everything you do, I truly mean it,” Killeen said. “We talk about you being the stage hands, the unsung heroes. You set the stage for success for the deploying forces, the main actors on the base, so that they can go forward and get the job done.”
In his own speech, Lianez shared elements of his command philosophy and hopes for the future of the installation.
“My expectations are high,” Lianez said. “We will be a superior installation powered by a bold team of professionals that are purpose-driven, people centered, and performance-based. Those are big words; that’s a lot of work, and we’re going to get it done.”
“I know clearly that the MCIPAC team will be strengthened further with you leading our warriors,” said Malavet, addressing Lianez and his family. “We warmly welcome you, Dusty, Kylee, Noah, and Morgan. Keep winning.”
Killeen is retiring after 34 years of honorable and faithful service. He was awarded the Legion of Merit gold star in lieu of second award for his contributions to the base and the Marines and Sailors that he led.
“Nothing has really ended,” Malavet said. “Your collective character, your love, and your many years of faithful service to America will endure.”