Merritt Island High, West Point Grad Lt. Col. Brian Jacobs Takes Command of U.S. Army Garrison In South Korea

By  //  August 8, 2017

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former running back for the Mustangs

MERRITT ISLAND HIGH GRAD Lt. Col. Brian A. Jacobs, right, assumes command of U.S. Army Garrison Casey, during a ceremony July 21. At left is Col. Brandon D. Newton, Commander, U.S. Army Garrison Red Cloud and Area I, of which USAG Casey is a part. Jacobs replaces Lt. Col. Jon R. Gardner, who led USAG Casey for the past two years. (Cpl. Lee Jinwoo image)

CAMP CASEY, SOUTH KOREA – Lt. Col. Brian A. Jacobs, a 1995 graduate of Merritt Island High School and a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, assumed command of U.S. Army Garrison Casey July 21 in a ceremony at Camp Casey in South Korea.

Jacobs, a former running back and four-year letterman for the Mustangs, is now an air defense artillery officer who has served in Iraq, Qatar and Korea. He assumed command of U.S. Army Garrison Casey, replacing Lt. Col. Jon R. Gardner, who moves to a new assignment after commanding USAG Casey for the past two years.

Jacobs’ most recent previous assignment was in Qatar as Deputy Commanding Officer for the 69th Air Defense Artillery Brigade in support of Operation Spartan Shield.

The ceremony went forward inside the Carey Physical Fitness Center, and was preceded by an award ceremony in which Gardner received the Meritorious Service Medal for his service as the USAG Casey commander.

USAG Casey runs the day-to-day operation of Camp Casey and Camp Hovey, both in Dongducheon. The garrison mainly supports those elements of the 2nd Infantry Division/ROK-US Combined Division stationed in the Camp Casey enclave.

It provides water, electricity, upkeep of roads, barracks, motor pools and other facilities, as well as sports and recreation programs for Soldiers and civilians.

During remarks at the ceremony, Col. Brandon D. Newton, Commander, U.S. Army Garrison Red Cloud and Area I, of which USAG Casey is a part, said Gardner had been a “lynchpin” in supporting Area I’s “transformation.” The term refers to a major repositioning of forces currently underway — by gradual, carefully orchestrated stages — in which U.S. forces are moving from Area I south to Camp Humphreys in Pyeongtaek.

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To Jacobs, Newton said “you have assumed command of a garrison that will play an increasingly pivotal role, as transformation proceeds on the Korean peninsula. We look forward to having you here” over the next two years, he said.

Early in his remarks as the new USAG Casey commander, Jacobs recalled his first tour of duty in Korea as an air defense artillery officer.

“This time 13 years ago I stood about a mile from here taking command of an Avenger Battery on Camp Casey. To now return as the Camp Casey garrison commander is beyond words humbling, and I am truly grateful.”

Addressing himself for a moment to Newton, Jacobs said “I look forward to learning from you over the next year and carrying the ball forward in support of the senior commander’s and your priorities.”

Jacobs is a 1999 graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in environmental geography. He is also a graduate of the Command and General Staff College, the Air Defense Artillery Captains Career Course, and Air Defense Artillery Officer Basic Course.

He’s served in a variety of strategic, operational and combat assignments, including platoon leader, battalion and division staff positions.

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Prior to his most recent assignment in Qatar, Jacobs served as assistant executive officer for the Assistant Chief of Staff for Installation Management.

He has also served as an Army analyst in the Commander’s Initiatives Group for the Commander of United Nations Command/Combined Forces Command/United States Forces Korea; battalion executive officer for 2nd Battalion, 1st Air Defense Artillery Regiment in Korea from 2011 to 2012; and battalion S-4 and battery commander with the 5th Battalion, 5th Air Defense Artillery Regiment in Korea from 2003 to 2005. Jacobs also completed a one-year combat deployment to Iraq with 1st Brigade, 1st Infantry Division, serving as an adviser to the Iraqi Border Police.

Jacobs’ awards and decorations include the Bronze Star, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal, Army Achievement Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Medal, Korean Defense Service Medal. He has also earned the Army Staff Badge, Air Assault Badge and Parachutist Badge.

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