CAMP PENDLETON – Brig. Gen. Edward D. Banta relinquished command of Marine Corps Installations West, Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, to Brig. Gen. Kevin J. Killea during a change of command ceremony at Camp Pendleton’s Ranch House, July 15.
Banta assumed command of MCI-West, MCB Camp Pendleton in August of 2014. Under his command, MCI-West earned several energy-related honors, including a Secretary of the Navy Energy and Water Management Platinum-Level Award.
In a letter from the Gen. Robert Neller, Commandant of the Marine Corps, Banta’s vision and focus to align MCI-West Installations and ranges with 1st Marine Expeditionary Force combat readiness requirements enabled Marines and Sailors, preparing to deploy, to achieve dynamic and realistic training across the Southwest United States.
“It’s all about training Marines and taking care of families and making sure we have all the resources to not only do that now but to do that in the future,” Banta said about the mission of MCI-West, MCB Camp Pendleton.
Banta’s next assignment is as CJ4 in support of Resolute Support Mission. Resolute Support is a NATO-led training, advisory and counter-terror mission base in Afghanistan.
Killea comes to Camp Pendleton from US Central Command where he served as the chief of staff, Combined Joint Task Force – Operation Inherent Resolve.
“When I was touring around with Gen. Banta, for the last three days, I got a real sense of a briskness, of a hop and a step to this organization and its obviously the result of a commitment and a professional approach to the mission,” said Killea. “I will ensure that that commitment is maintained.”
In attendance were distinguished military guests which included Lt. Gen. David H. Berger, Maj. Gen. Lewis A. Craparotta, Brig. Gen. Thomas Weidley and Rear Adm. Markham Rich.
In lieu of the traditional presentation of flowers to the outgoing and incoming generals’ spouses, Molly Banta and Kathleen Killea elected to have a donation made to the Fisher House Foundation and the Injured Marine Semper Fi Fund to continue to support Marines and their families.
MCI-West’s primary mission is training, sustaining and making deployment-ready Marines and to provide families with services that enrich their lives. The command is comprised of five Marine Corps installations: Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, Marine Corps Air Station Camp Pendleton, Marine Corps Air Station Miramar and Marine Corps Logistics Base Barstow in California and Marine Corps Air Station Yuma.
MCI-West, MCB Camp Pendleton provides service support to more than 50,000 Marines, Sailors, family members and civilian employees.