April 30, 2008 (by Justin Oakes) - Family and friends of the 310th FS "Top Hats" and 425th FS "Black Widows," gathered to support two changes of command ceremonies here April 24 and 25.
Col. Robert Givens, 56th OG commander, officiated the 310th FS change of command ceremony on April 24th, 2008. Lt. Col. Scott Gierat, 310th FS commander, relinquished command to Lt. Col. James McCune.
After two years of superior leadership, two commanders left a legacy for two new leaders to continue.
Lt. Col. James McCune, 308th FS
Director of Operations, took command of the 310th FS from Lt. Col. Scott Gierat April 24.
Lt. Col. Gierat will depart Luke and head to Stuttgart, Germany, where he will work on the European Command staff as the Chief of the Joint Exercise Execution Branch. Before he relinquished his command, he reflected upon his time as the 310th FS commander.
According to Lt. Col. Gierat, every Airman displayed an extraordinarily high level of commitment and dedication. "Without them, I would not have had the opportunity for such success. They deserve the credit," Lt. Col. Gierat said.
Upon assuming command of the 310th FS, Lt. Col. McCune said he was thankful for the privilege to serve with the men and women of the Top Hats.
"The team is fantastic, and I will work hard to uphold the Top Hats great reputation," he said. "I hope I can live up to the level of excellence that they have set."
Lt. Col. Lynn Scheel relinquished command of the 425th FS to Lt. Col. Stephen Granger, 309th FS Director of Operations, April 25.
"It was an absolute privilege to be your commander, and it is with a heavy heart that I have to say good-bye," said Lt. Col. Scheel during his closing remarks at the ceremony. "There are no words to express my appreciation. Continue to strive to be the best that you can in a field that is extremely challenging - your country depends on it."
Shortly after Lt. Col. Scheel's remarks and the U.S. Air Force and Singapore
anthems, Lt. Col. Stephen Granger assumed command of the Black Widows. Lt. Col. Granger said he would continue to foster the development and excellence exemplified by the 425th FS by focusing on the "one team, one fight, best of both worlds" philosophy.