PHILADELPHIA, Nov. 27, 2017 —
The commander of the Defense Logistics Agency Troop Support, Mark Simerly, was promoted to the Army rank of brigadier general during a ceremony Nov. 22 in Philadelphia.
The promotion recognizes Simerly’s potential for increased responsibility, said DLA Director Army Lt. Gen. Darrell Williams, who officiated the ceremony.
“But I think about it a little differently in this case,” said Williams, who served with Simerly at the Combined Army Support Command at Fort Lee, Virginia, before their current DLA assignments.
“You see, I’ve worked closely with Mark the last two-and-a-half years, and I understand his values,” Williams said. “I know the quality of leader that he is. And I know the quality of work that he produces. And in my assessment, as a three-star general in the United States Army, there’s no greater Army logistics colonel I know that has a greater proven track record of success than Mark Simerly.”
A Richmond, Virginia native, Simerly was commissioned a lieutenant after receiving his bachelor’s degree as a distinguished military graduate from the University of Richmond in 1984.
Simerly took command of Troop Support in July. Williams thought then that Simerly would have time to get used to his new position.
“But three back-to-back hurricanes got in the way of that plan,” Williams said, referring to Hurricanes Irma, Harvey and Maria. “And I must say that Troop Support’s response, under Colonel Simerly’s leadership, has been nothing less than phenomenal.”
The materials Troop Support provided in support of hurricane relief efforts include:
- 42,000 shelf stable meals
- 44 million Meals, Ready to Eat
- 770,000 liters of water
- 751 generators
- 28 transformers
- 20,000 hand crank radios
- 738 lines of pharmaceuticals to the USS Comfort
Simerly said he was grateful for the senior leaders, including Williams, who have mentored him throughout his career. He also said he was grateful for the noncommissioned officers and all the soldiers that he’s served with.
He said he’s also grateful to serve with the Troop Support team, “that’s more committed to supporting the warfighter than any I’ve known.”
Simerly’s wife, Cyndi, and daughter, Alison, placed his new general officer rank onto the shoulders of his uniform. His son, Luke, placed the star onto his beret.
Simerly told his children that their love, support and sacrifice made the day possible. He also thanked his wife, with whom he celebrated 30 years of marriage in October.
“When I think of the obvious fact that I would not be standing here without you, and that this promotion is a testament to the power of your love, it makes me think of the great Otis Redding song, ‘That’s How Strong My Love Is,’” he said.