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Maj.Gen. John G. Rossi, left, commanding general of Fort Sill and the Fires Center of Excellence, presents Brig. Gen. Christopher F. Bentley with the Legion of Merit as Bentley’s wife Anne looks on during a retreat ceremony here Friday.

Bentley leaves Field Artillery School

The commandant of the Field Artillery School is heading east after not quite a year on the job, but as he said at a retreat ceremony in his honor Friday, "In the Army we don't say 'goodbye' but 'till we meet again.'"

Brig. Gen. Christopher F. Bentley has been tabbed to become deputy commanding general for support of 3rd Infantry Division at Fort Stewart, Ga. His replacement, Col. William Turner, is not expected to arrive here until July, according to Keith Pannell, Fort Sill public affairs specialist.

Maj. Gen. John G. Rossi, commanding general of Fort Sill and the Fires Center of Excellence, arrived here three days ago, and part of his job is shaping the Fires force. He expressed regret that the chief of the Field Artillery branch is leaving so soon after his own arrival and he will not have his help in that respect.

Rossi said he has not worked with Bentley in the past, but his reputation is known throughout the Army.

"Everyone I've spoken to in the last three days and prior to coming here confirmed to me what I have heard Ö that Chris has brought excellence to the commandant's office and has succeeded in every way imaginable," the commanding general said.

The commandant is the driving force behind policies and procedures, and setting the standards for young men and women in uniform, he said.

Rossi predicted that by developing adaptive leaders, Bentley's impact on the young leaders of his branch will have a multiplying effect as they take on new roles. That would not have been possible without the help of his wife, Anne, who received the Alice Grierson Award for Excellence for her selfless service to the Fort Sill community and artillery.

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