Chairman Sends Farewell Message to Troops
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, Sept. 28, 2007 Marine Gen. Peter Pace, the outgoing chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, thanked servicemembers for their dedication and sacrifice in a farewell message released today.
“As my time as chairman comes to an end, I am filled with pride in the accomplishments of the incredible men and women of our armed forces, and humility in having had the opportunity to serve with each of you,” Pace, who is retiring Sept. 30, wrote.
For the past six years, Pace has served as vice chairman and chairman of the Joint Chiefs. During this time and his more-than-40-year military career, he said, he has been enriched personally and professionally by all the troops he has come in contact with.
“From full combat operations to critical relief missions, your efforts around the world have brought stability to troubled regions, hope to those in need, and honor to America’s citizens,” Pace wrote to the troops. “During this challenging time in our nation’s history, you have contributed immeasurably by defending the homeland and fighting terrorists who threaten the values we hold so dear.”
America’s servicemembers have stepped forward to fight even when safer, easier options were available, Pace wrote. “Your actions have demonstrated a thorough understanding of risk, and the honor in being part of something bigger than yourself,” he said. “Your courage and selfless service will ensure your children -- and their children -- will enjoy the same freedoms that all Americans have enjoyed for generations.”
Pace also praised military families for their sacrifices, noting that it takes great strength and resolve to deal with long deployments and frequent moves.
“You define us and sustain us with your quiet devotion, and untold strength,” Pace wrote to the families. “You represent all that is good and worthy of our sacrifices. No words can adequately express my gratitude for your unwavering support, but I offer my sincere and heartfelt thanks to those who love us, and who sacrifice so much to secure our peace.”
Pace’s last official day at the Pentagon was yesterday, and he will be honored in a farewell ceremony at Fort Myer, Va., Oct. 1.