Lieutenant Gen. Robert F. Hedelund relinquished his post as II Marine Expeditionary Force commanding general to Lt. Gen. Brian D. Beaudreault during a II Marine Expeditionary Force change of command at Camp Lejeune, June 13.
Lt. Gen. Hedelund will begin his next position as the commanding general of U.S. Marine Corps Forces Command in Norfolk, Virginia.
“One word comes to mind for me, for II MEF every day, and that is excellence,” said Hedelund. “But you don’t get to the excellence part without dedicated people all around you.”
The Commandant of the Marine Corps, Gen. Robert B. Neller was in attendance with his family, friends and allies from the Norwegian Army as Lt. Gen. Hedelund said his final goodbyes and thanked the Marines of II MEF.
“I just want to tell these Marines that are doing this ceremony tonight how proud I am of them,” said Lt. Gen. Hedelund. “The inspiring way that they have presented themselves and been our inspiration these past two years, it was an honor for me to serve alongside them.”
Lt. Gen. Hedelund passed command of II MEF to Lt. Gen. Beaudreault who most recently served as deputy commandant for Plans, Policies, and Operations at the Pentagon.
“I am very fortunate to follow [Hedelund’s] leadership in the positive direction in which this MEF has been taken,” said Lt. Gen. Beaudreault. “Thank you for turning over what is a gem of an organization to me and collectively we will continue to get it done.”
The ceremony concluded with the two leaders standing together for the pass and review as their Marines marched by in formation.
After the ceremony, Lt. Gen. Hedelund was awarded with a Norwegian Army Medal of Merit from Maj. Gen. Odin Johannessen, Chief of the Norwegian Army, for strengthening security in the region and building and maintaining the relationship between II MEF and Norwegian Armed Forces, most notably during exercise Trident Juncture.