MARINE CORPS BASE KANEOHE BAY, Hawaii --
Sergeant Maj. Evans McBride retired and relinquished his post as U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Pacific sergeant major to Sgt. Maj. James Futrell at the MCBH flightline June 19.
During his 32 years in the Marine Corps he served as a drill instructor, Marine security guard and trained officer candidates among many other roles. He assumed his post as MarForPac sergeant major December 2006.
“I wish I could do this for another five years. I hate to go,” said McBride as he addressed hundreds of Marines and sailors in formation. “You’ll see what I’m talking about as you rise through the ranks.”
His hard work and passion for leading Marines did not go unnoticed during his tenure. He leaves behind remnants of his work with Marines who will follow in his footsteps.
“Your wisdom and sage advice have been absolutely invaluable to me. Your leadership has touched every corner of this big place in many, many ways,” said MarForPac commanding general, Lt. Gen. Keith J. Stalder. “We are all the better for having served with you, and I am, in particular, the better for having been your close associate and friend. Thanks for all you have done; not only for me, but for the Marine Corps and the nation.”
As Futrell begins his new role as sergeant major of the Corps’ largest field command, comprised of approximately 80,000 Marines, sailors and civilians, he looks forward to duties and challenges that await him.
“I can’t say anymore than what a young football player would say on the sidelines. He’d say, ‘Put me in coach. I’m ready. Give me the ball,’” Futrell said. “I think I can handle it. As a matter of fact, I know I can handle it.”
Stalder expressed his confidence in McBride’s successor to continue to build on the foundation laid before him and to take on the tasks ahead.
“Sergeant Major Futrell, welcome. You’ve got a great reputation and a great background. I’m proud and honored to serve with you to serve these sailors and Marines,” Stalder said. “And let me assure you; you’re in the game, there’s no doubt about that.”
Futrell comes to MarForPac from Quantico, Va. where he served as sergeant major of Marine Corps Combat Development Command, National Capitol Region, D.C., and Marine Corps Forces Strategic Command located in Omaha, Neb.
Bidding farewell to McBride, Futrell assured the Marines and sailors in his charge of his dedication to his mission.
“My pledge to you is to give you my best and I ask you nothing less in return. I’ll work for the Marines, I’ll work for Lt. Gen. Stalder,” Futrell said. “Sergeant Major McBride: I’m not here to try to take your place. I’m just here to build off what you’ve already established. Enjoy retirement. You have done a lot, and I thank you for it.”