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    General Held Up by Senate Confirmation Stall Takes Command of Camp Pendleton’s Largest Fighting Force

    General Held Up by Senate Confirmation Stall Takes Command of Camp Pendleton's Largest Fighting Force

    Lt. Gen. Michael S. Cederholm, selected almost 11 months ago to take over the Marines' largest warfighting unit, finally took the helm at California's Pendleton, calling the I Marine Expeditionary “America's hammer.”

    “We come to fight, and we come to win,” Cederholm said during the long-delayed change of command ceremony held Friday, Feb. 16. “I'm excited to get after it and get into the attack.”

    Cederhom, who previously served at the Pentagon as the Marine Corps' deputy commandant for aviation, is taking over the command of the nearly 44,000 Marines and sailors from Lt. Gen. Bradford J. Gering, who had assumed the duties in August when a stall in the Senate confirmation process for general officers kept Cederholm from taking his job.

    Cederhom had been nominated for the post by President Joe Biden in March. At least 300 senior officers within the Department of Defense were impacted by the delay, with some only now taking their jobs at bases across the nation and beyond.

    Before leading the I Marine Expeditionary Force, Gering led the 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing at Miramar, one of the force's 11 subordinate units. The posting in August to Camp Pendleton delayed his promotion to lieutenant general and his orders to take over as deputy commandant of aviation.

    Friday's ceremony included a moment of silence for five Marines – known as the Flying Tigers from Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron…

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