Cornes relinquishes command of Ireland Army Health Clinic to Bass June 28

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Leadership of Fort Knox U.S. Army Medical Activity and Ireland Army Health Clinic officially changed hands June 28 when Col. Bob Cornes handed the unit colors to Col. Kevin Bass, the incoming commander, in a change of command ceremony held at Waybur Theater.

Bass arrives at IRAHC after completing a fellowship at the Department of Health and Human Services, Policy and Planning. Before that he was the deputy commander of the 44th Medical Brigade. Cornes leaves the Fort Knox community on his way to his next assignment as the
military assistant to the secretary of Veterans Affairs in Washington, D.C.

Brig. Gen. Scott Dingle, the commander of Regional Health Command Atlantic, hosted the change and paid tribute to each man’s Family, to the character of Bass and Cornes, and the history of health care at Fort Knox.

“Since 1918, there has been an unbroken line of exceptional health care at Fort Knox dedicated to conserving the fighting strength and preserving the health of our Soldiers, Families and veterans,” he said. “The Fort Knox missions may have changed over the years—from a post focused on artillery, mechanized cavalry and armor, to the 194th separate armored brigade—in which we used to say, when I was a lieutenant, that we spent so much time in the field that they would send us anywhere for $1.94—even up to today where Fort Knox is the home of a multi-dimensional mission …,”

But, he added, through all those changes the community still received the same outstanding health care. The leadership of IRAHC is in good hands, he said, with Bass who is, “another superior leader.”

“He is leader prepared, leader developed, and leader experienced to build upon Ireland’s great accomplishments,” he explained. “(He’s) the quintessential leader to lead the Ireland team through and to the next level of success and transformation.”

After his remarks Dingle introduced Cornes who reminisced with the audience about, “two years of challenges and victories, changes to HELOS, closing the award-winning Warrior Transition Unit and a transition from hospital to clinic.”

“I am humble and proud to serve alongside this staff,” he said. “You have become like a Family to me. And to Col. Bass, I am excited for you as you embark on this command…”

At his going away dinner the week before, Cornes’ staff bestowed a “call sign” on him, something he said he always wondered about—what was his call sign? They decided on a combination of “hospital” and “clinic” in honor of the transition.

As he finished his last address to the IRAHC staff
and community during the change of command, he placed his new emblem on the podium and said, “HOSNIC 6 out,” before turning the reigns over to Bass.

The new commander congratulated Cornes on his accomplishments, thanked the Cornes Family for helping his Family with a smooth transition to Fort Knox and thanked Dingle for his confidence in leading the Fort Knox MEDDAC.

Bass said his main priorities are to the safety and quality of health care for patients, and to the employees under his command.

“I want to thank the employees upfront as we continue to provide world-class medical care to our beneficiaries,” he said. “It is an honor and privilege to be your commander.”