"The Old Breed" has a new master.
Maj. Gen. Daniel J. O'Donohue took command of 1st Marine Division during a Sept. 10 ceremony at Camp Pendleton, California.
O'Donohue, who will now lead the division with a storied history that includes World War II campaigns at Guadalcanal, Peleliu and Okinawa, takes the helm from Brig. Gen. Daniel Yoo.
"It is an honor to join the magnificent Marines and sailors of the 1st Marine Division and to replace two combat leaders such as [Lieutenant] General Nicholson and now [Brigadier] General Yoo," he said during the ceremony.
Yoo led the division for a short time, having taken charge in late July after Nicholson was tapped to head III Marine Expeditionary Force in Okinawa, Japan. But, he expressed humility for the opportunity to serve as commander of the "Blue Diamond" as the division is known for its distinct insignia emblazoned with the Southern Cross constellation and "Guadalcanal" over a red one – both references to the Marines' Pacific campaign against Japanese imperial forces.
"I leave with a lot of pride and a lot of sadness from being in such a historical organization," he said. "It is something I will cherish. I'm proud of all the commanders and what they do on a daily basis."
Yoo will now serve as a staff officer at U.S. Special Operations Command.
O'Donohue is moving to Pendleton from his previous post as head of Marine Corps Forces Cyberspace Command, which he assumed in January. He will likely bring a unique perspective to 1st Marine Division as top leaders push to better incorporate cyber capabilities into the operating force. That has included reshuffling planning staffs to include cyber planners who can help battlefield commanders determine how cyber capabilities can support tactical operations.
The 23,000 strong division includes Headquarters Battalion, 1st, 5th, 7th and 11th Marine Regiments, 1st Reconnaissance Battalion, 1st and 3rd Light Armored Reconnaissance battalions, 1st Tank Battalion, 1st Combat Engineer Battalion and 3rd Assault Amphibian Battalion.