Randy Reeves assumed command of Naval Reserve Center Meridian Thursday, in the presence of one of his heroes, retired Congressman Sonny Montgomery.
"It's a great honor to be commanding officer of a facility named for a legend like Sonny Montgomery. It's his efforts and those like him that have kept this base as strong as it is," Reeves said.
The naval reserve center has various units that involve field and medical support for all branches of the service and a new security group.
"We're using the reserves because we had to, because we don't have enough money to have a big, active force, but it was a smart thing to do," said Montgomery. "I'm glad just to have a small part in it."
Many attribute the quality of training and level of U.S. strength to people like Montgomery, who have long supported the military and defense.
"He is modest," said NAS commanding officer, Capt. Jeffrey Dickman of Montgomery. "We're as vital as we are today due to his actions while in Congress."
And as the new commander took on his assignment, Reeves recalled an admonishment Montgomery gave him 23 years ago to always set a good example, even in difficult circumstances.