My brothers, Neal and Stephen, and I recently flew to Fort Lewis, WA to attend Lieutenant General (LTG) Brown’s promotion and Change of Command. We had the opportunity to fly with Dr. Sugden, a volunteer with Veteran’s Airlift Command (VAC), in his personal jet. Veteran’s Airlift Command is a group of volunteer airplane owners and pilots, who transport wounded soldiers, veterans and their families for humanitarian purposes. It was one of the best flights I’ve taken as I sat in the co-pilots seat and had the controls at my finger tips. During the flight, Dr. Sugden shared about his service in the military and as a doctor over the past four decades.

We attended Major General (MG) Brown’s promotion to LTG, which wasn’t a typical ceremony because of LTG Brown’s dynamic and gracious personality. He praised his wife, Patty and 3 beautiful girls for their support. He made it a point to thank the men and women whom have given so much, their lives, fighting for our Country’s freedom. After the promotion concluded, we attended the Change of Command on the parade field. LTG Brown is now the Commander of First Corp which leads, controls, and moves, three Army Divisions over the Pacific. A band played as the Change of Command was conducted. My brothers described the event to me and it brought back memories of “happy times” marching as a Cadet on the West Point lawn. In the end, we Smiley’s had a great time supporting our friend and new Commanding General of I Corp.

Congratulations Lieutenant General Brown and family. We are so proud of you. Keep up the great work!

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