MARINE CORPS AIR GROUND COMBAT CENTER TWENTYNINE PALMS, Calif. – --
The Marine Corps Communication-Electronics School received a new commander at the Combat Center’s Lance Cpl. Torrey L. Gray Field Thursday when Col. Kevin Nally relinquished his command to Col. David Terando.
Nally, a 50-year-old Troy, Ohio, native, accomplished much while he commanded MCCES.
Under his charge, he helped establish a tighter working relationship between the civilian and Marine instructors, resulting in a better education for the students, and the school house was recognized by Headquarters Marine Corps with a safety award that highlighted their motorcycle safety program.
Nally was an influential role into bringing MCCES into the direction it is headed, but he said he was most proud of his role in helping to bring a warrior mindset back to the school house.
“We brought in the MCMAP [Marine Corps Martial Arts Program] program, so that every student has the opportunity to become a gray belt before they leave,” he said. “We also established a World War II style obstacle course.”
Nally now serves as the Combat Center’s assistant chief of staff of communications and information systems. During the ceremony, he thanked everyone for their support in helping MCCES move into the right direction.
Terando, the former I Marine Expeditionary Force assistant chief of staff of communications and information systems, plans to follow in Nally’s footsteps in maintaining the warrior mindset and said he also has his own ideas to bring to the table.
Terando, a 46-year-old Standard, Ill., native, returned from a deployment to Iraq early this year. He said he plans to use the knowledge he gained on his deployment to better prepare the students for the operating forces.
“I saw what they did in Iraq,” he said. “I want to bring that knowledge to the school house. Many of us will be going to combat, so we need to constantly keep that in the forefront of our minds.”
Some of the tactics, techniques and procedures are more involved now in theatre, and they constantly change at a fast pace, he added.
Terando expressed his enthusiasm for taking over the command
“It’s an honor to have this,” he said. “This is the only [colonel] billet in the Marine Corps that is strictly relevant to our field. I’m looking forward to the next step.”