JACKSONVILLE, ONSLOW COUNTY -

Marine Corps Air Station New River conducted a Change of Command Ceremony for the air station's commanding officer Wednesday morning.

Col. Mitch E. Cassell relinquished command of New River to Col. Timothy M. Salmon  during a ceremony on the flight line.

"I'm very excited to be here, taking over the Marine Corps Air Station New River," Salmon said. "It's got a proud tradition, and one terrific job with the local community, the marines and sailors, and I look forward to taking care of them."

These change of command ceremonies usually happen every two to three years, but this year's was rare.

Cassell only had the position for about a year. Officials at the Pentagon have appointed him to become the Deputy Director of Politico-Military Affairs for Central, Southern and Southeast Asia.

The ceremony, Cassell says, was bittersweet.

"I'll miss the flying," Cassell said. "The people are wonderful. I come to work and everyone puts forth 100 percent effort. [Salmon is] a good guy. He understands a lot of this stuff. So I think I'm handing it off to someone who can take what I leave and run with it."