Released: 22 Feb 2000
PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. (AFPN) -- Gen. Ralph E. "Ed" Eberhart assumed command of the North American Aerospace Defense Command, United States Space Command and Air Force Space Command, in a ceremony here Feb 22.
More than 400 people attended the event presided over by Gen. Maurice Baril, chief of the Canadian Defence Staff; Army Gen. Hugh Shelton, Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman; and Gen. Michael E. Ryan, Air Force chief of staff. Also in attendance was retired Gen. Yuji Hiraoka, former chief of staff, Japanese Defense Force, who traveled from Tokyo.
"Today I inherit a triple legacy of excellence, global vigilance and deterrence," said Eberhart upon assuming command of the three organizations.
The traditional ceremony featured three squadrons comprising soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines representing each command, the United States and Canada. Steeped in military tradition, the event included a 19-gun Army artillery cannon battery salute, and culminated with a Naval piping of the side ceremony - a distinct nautical courtesy extended to military, diplomatic and consular officers.
A 1968 graduate of the U.S. Air Force Academy, Eberhart comes here from an assignment as commander of Air Combat Command, and replaces Gen. Richard B. Myers who will become JCS vice chairman.
As NORAD commander, Eberhart is responsible for the binational Canadian-U.S. organization charged with the missions of aerospace warning and control for the North American continent.
As one of the nation's nine unified commands, U.S. Space Command coordinates the use of Defense Department space forces and civil space to perform the missions of space forces support; space force enhancement; space force application, space force control and computer network defense.
As commander of Air Force Space Command, he will oversee the mission of assuring combat forces access to space, and responsibility for the command's
intercontinental ballistic missile forces. (Courtesy of AFSPC News Service)
* Army Gen. Henry H. Shelton
* Gen. Michael E. Ryan
* Gen. Ralph E. Eberhart
* Gen. Richard B. Myers
* Air Force Space Command
* Joint Chiefs of Staff
* North American Aerospace Defense
* Peterson Air Force Base, Colo.
* U.S. Space Command