MARINE CORPS AIR STATION YUMA, Ariz. --
Col. Christopher McPhillips, commanding officer of Marine Aircraft Group (MAG) 13, relinquished command to Col. Marcus Annibale aboard Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, Arizona, July 31.
McPhillips took command in May 31, 2013, making it his second time being stationed in MCAS Yuma in a command position, his first as commanding officer of Marine Attack Squadron (VMA) 214.
McPhillips thanked the approximately 2,800 Marines under his charge for making his time as a commander enjoyable.
“Those that have commanded before know what a special thing it is to be in command,” said McPhillips. “It takes a couple of life counts out of you, but I got to smile more than I got gray hairs so thank you.”
Now ready to move on, McPhillips said he is happy to relinquish command to Annibale.
“It’s time for me to go, and I know Annibale will breathe new life into the MAG,” said McPhillips. “He is the exact right person at the exact right time to do it.”
Annibale, like McPhillips, served as a squadron commander within MAG-13 before returning to command the MAG and is aware of the difficulties associated with it.
“I know it will be challenging,” said Annibale. “We have new aircraft and that’s going to present new trials and tribulations. We are also still engaged overseas and I’m sure just those two things will keep me very busy.”
According to Annibale, he is not focused on improving much due to the great leadership he feels preceded him. His top priority during his tour as commanding officer will be to ensure the Marines of MAG-13 stay ready for the fight.