Maj. Gen. Mark Milley will take command of III Corps and Fort Hood at a Dec. 20 ceremony.

Milley relinquished command of 10th Mountain Division and Fort Drum, N.Y., to Maj. Gen. Stephen J. Townsend on Monday — the same day Congress confirmed his nomination to command the “Great Place” and receive a third star.

Milley replaces former III Corps and Fort Hood commander Lt. Gen. Donald M. Campbell Jr., who left last week.

Upon leaving Fort Drum, Milley traveled to Grafenwoehr, Germany, to join III Corps for the Unified Endeavor 13-01 Combined Training Exercise to prepare the unit for its deployment to Afghanistan next year, according to the III Corps Media Office.

Within his first six months as commander, Milley will lead III Corps on a NATO mission in Afghanistan, where it will serve as a headquarters unit with other countries.

Milley served as Fort Drum commander for one year, but spent many previous tours at the New York installation, serving as a field grade officer, and later, as commander of the division’s 2nd Brigade Combat Team during deployments to Afghanistan and Iraq.

During the command-change ceremony, he said leaving was difficult.

“It is here that our children grew up. It is here where they went to school,” Milley said. “This is our home. It is very difficult to leave on such short notice. I’ve been surrounded this past year by an incredible group of people.”

Milley graduated from Princeton University in 1980 and was commissioned through ROTC, according to his online biography.

He’s had multiple command and staff positions in six infantry divisions and special forces over the last 31 years and has also deployed to Egypt, Panama, Haiti and Bosnia-Herzegovina.

In addition to a bachelor’s degree in political science from Princeton, Milley holds master’s degrees from Columbia University in international relations and from the U.S. Naval War College in national security and strategic studies.

He also is a graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Seminar XXI National Security Studies program, a nine-month educational program for senior military officers and government officials in the U.S. national security and foreign policy communities.

Brig. Gen. James M. Richardson is serving as interim commander and also is in Germany for training. Richardson accepted command from Campbell during a ceremony last week. Before the event, he served as deputy commander of III Corps and Fort Hood and will continue in that role once Milley assumes command.

Campbell replaced Lt. Gen. Mark P. Hertling, who left his post as commander of U.S. Army Europe and Seventh Army Nov. 1. Campbell took command in Germany on Monday from Maj. Gen. James C. Booze, who was the acting commander in Hertling’s absence.

Contact Rose L. Thayer at or (254) 501-7463. Follow her on Twitter at KDHmilitary.

Rose L. Thayer is the military editor for the Killeen Daily Herald. She joined the paper in February 2011 as a health and military reporter. View her complete profile Here.

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