By Amanda Kim Stairrett
Killeen Daily Herald
FORT HOOD - Col. Bill Hill handed over command of the Fort Hood garrison to Col. Mark Freitag during a ceremony Thursday at III Corps headquarters.
Hill is set to deploy to Kuwait where he will serve on Third Army's operations staff.
Hill took command of the garrison on Aug. 24, 2007, from Col. Victoria Bruzese. He came to Fort Hood from U.S. Northern Command, where he served as deputy and chief for the Future Operations Section, according to past Herald reports.
Hill and his wife, Kathleen, have three children: Will, Mary Anna and Caroline.
Hill said Thursday that he was introduced to Fort Hood almost three years ago as Col. William V. Hill III and he was leaving as Bill Hill. He hoped he earned the friendship and trust of the Fort Hood and local communities, he added.
Serving as garrison commander was the hardest job Hill said he's ever had, but it was the most fun and rewarding, and he will miss it.
"I'm proud to have been your garrison commander," Hill said to the crowd of soldiers, families and community members before him.
J. Randall Robinson, director of the Installation Management Command's West Region, said Hill was an outstanding garrison commander who did "the most respect-worthy work." The projects that unfolded at Fort Hood during Hill's time in command equal more than $220 million and include things like barracks, a central energy plant and facilities at North Fort Hood, Robinson said.
Robinson went on to say that Fort Hood was in good hands with Freitag.
Freitag has 22 years of experience as an Army family member and 22 years of experience on active duty, he said. Garrison command is the right match for him, he added.
"I'm ready and I won't let you down," Freitag said.
Freitag comes to Fort Hood from the National War College in Washington, D.C. Before that, he served as the military assistant to the deputy defense secretary.
Freitag, who grew up in a military family, is a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy. He was commissioned as an armor officer in 1988.
He and his wife, Patty, have a daughter, Bethany.
Contact Amanda Kim Stairrett at firstname.lastname@example.org or (254) 501-7547. Follow her on Twitter at KDHmilitary.