Naval Air Facility Misawa holds change of command ceremony

Naval Air Facility Misawa holds change of command ceremony

by MC3(SW) Samuel Bacon
NAF Misawa

Capt. Brian K. Pummill relieved Capt. Keith M. Henry as commanding officer during a change of command ceremony at Misawa Air Base June 30 after the completion of Henry’s successful three-year tour.

Commander, Naval Forces Japan, Rear Adm. Gregory Fenton was the guest speaker at the ceremony.

“Captain Henry’s operational and tactical experience is unmatched,” said Fenton. “His previous tours at Naval Strike and Air Warfare Center and United States Pacific Command ensured that Naval Air Facility (NAF) Misawa would lean forward operationally on his watch. His aggressive approach to conservation reduced cost by hundreds of thousands of dollars each year, maximizing tax payer dollars. I know Henry would be the first to give credit for his accomplishments over the last three years to the Sailors who keep NAF Misawa running smoothly, but I can avow that his leadership enabled this first-class team to excel.”

More than 300 Sailors, special guests, and friends and family of the command attended the ceremony.

“It’s the environment that sets the stage for positive things,” said Henry during his final remarks as commanding officer of NAF Misawa. “Sailors not just participating in COMRELs, but embracing and leading them. Sailors not just attending festivals, but participating in them. Sailors really wanting to get to know the people of Aomori. That environment set the stage for aviation units of Seventh Fleet to smoothly accomplish their mission from Misawa – furthering our Nations’ strategic objectives in our area of responsibility. These missions get accomplished because of the great partnership and environment you have helped our Navy team set. This phenomenal installation support to Seventh Fleet would not be possible without the great work of the Sailors, U.S. civilians and Japanese civilians of NAF Misawa.”

As commanding officer, Henry was directly responsible for managing NAF Misawa which provided support services for more than 275 Sailors from twelve tenant commands. Henry notably hosted six independent expeditionary deployments of EA-18G electronic attack squadrons and six P-3/P-8 maritime patrol squadron forward deployments as well as various other Marine and Navy commands in training and tasking.

Henry will continue on as the Chief of Staff for Commander, Naval Forces Japan in Yokosuka.

“The continued success of NAF Misawa is the result of the type of hard work and dedication on full display today,” said Pummill. “Providing aviation and ground logistic support and services to all permanent and transient Navy and Marine warfighters in Northern Japan is no small task. An undertaking that couldn’t be accomplished without engaged tenant (commands) and a strong partnership with the 35th Fighter Wing, Japanese Self-Defense Forces, and the city of Misawa. Every officer, chief, Sailor, and U.S. and Japanese civilian must continue to be committed to performing our mission at the highest standards while always seeking ways to improve.

Pummill, a native of Piqua, Ohio, graduated with honors from the United States Naval Academy in 1994. He served as the Operations Officer aboard USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. Pummill previously served as a Program Director for operational-level NATO exercises at the Joint Warfare Centre in Stavanger, Norway before reporting to NAF Misawa.

NAF Misawa is an associate command, hosted by the U.S. Air Force 35th Fighter Wing (FW), providing aviation and ground logistic support and services for all permanent and transient United States Navy and Marine forces in Northern Japan.

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