Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center, Twentynine Palms, Calif. --
Lt. Col. Seth E. Yost took command of 1st Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, from Lt. Col. David P. Bradney Jan. 31, during the unit’s change of command ceremony at Lance Cpl. Torrey L. Gray Field.
“As a leader, you’re not going to go one step further than what your Marines are willing to carry you,” Bradney said. “ I’ve always believed that, but it was never more true over these last 21, almost 22 months. These Marines are absolute professionals in every sense of the word. There was never a time when they were tasked that I was in doubt they would complete that task.”
The battalion lined up in their Service Alpha uniforms and presented M-16 service rifles to honor the outgoing commander and to welcome the new. The field was also guarded by a few armed Marines with combat gear, to ensure the ceremony would go smoothly.
“They are, hands down, the finest Marines that I have served alongside in my career,” Bradney said. “They experienced extreme hardships, the kind of hardships you only experience during combat: the loss of a brother, witnessing the maiming and wounding of a brother. They did this everyday without complaint.”
When Bradney talked about his Marines, he emphasized how proud he was of them and explained to Yost the impact the ‘First Team’ Marines will have on his career.
“I will tell you that the Marines will carry you, but just be cautious, because when they do, they have a tendency to gain momentum, so you’ll probably have to hold on,” he added.
During his turn to speak at the ceremony, Yost took the microphone and credited the success of the battalion’s last deployment to Bradney.
“This is a strong battalion,” Yost said to Bradney. “It’s one of the finest I’ve seen and it’s a testament to your leadership and commitment to those men. Thank you for turning over this battalion.”
Yost wrapped up the ceremony with a message to the Marines of his new battalion, “I’m honored to stand beside you and I look forward to serving with you as we write the next chapter in our history together.”