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U.S. Navy Capt. Eilis Cancel Assumes Command of Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti

16 April 2024

From Lt. j.g. Brittany Crocker

CAMP LEMONNIER, Djibouti (April 16, 2024) – U.S. Navy Capt. Eilis Cancel assumed command of Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti, the U.S. military's only permanent base in Africa, at a change of command ceremony on April 16, 2024.
CAMP LEMONNIER, Djibouti (April 16, 2024) – U.S. Navy Capt. Eilis Cancel assumed command of Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti, the U.S. military's only permanent base in Africa, at a change of command ceremony on April 16, 2024.

Capt. Cancel relieved U.S. Navy Capt. Suzanne Krauss, who began serving as Camp Lemonnier’s commanding officer on April 16, 2023. Rear Adm. Brad Collins, Commander of Navy Region Europe, Africa, Central presided over the ceremony.

“Capt. Krauss, your impact is evident,” said Collins. “It is clear by the people here today and the relationships you’ve built throughout Djibouti and across the region that you have the innate ability to inspire, an impeccable work ethic and you are a leader who will be sorely missed. You’ve led this team through so much and we thank you.”

Camp Lemonnier is an operational installation that enables U.S., allied and partner nation forces to be where they are needed to ensure security and protect U.S. interests. The installation provides world-class support for service members, transient U.S. assets and 38 local tenant commands through 24/7 flight operations, force protection, port operations, lodging and facility management.

“Sailors, civilians and contractors of Camp Lemonnier, I have been unavoidably transformed serving as your Skipper,” said Krauss. “Your commitment to our mission and our Navy has been visible every day in the work you do and the motivation you put into it.”

Capt. Cancel, Camp Lemonnier’s new commanding officer, previously commanded Naval Reserve Commander, Navy Europe and Africa’s N-5 Africa North units. She directed the 2022 and 2023 Phoenix Express exercise, which encourages partnership with North African and Mediterranean nations.

“I am honored to assume command of Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti,” said Cancel. “I know how important this installation is to regional security and stability in the Horn of Africa. I look forward to continuing our long legacy of partnership with our Djiboutian hosts and our regional allies.”

Capt. Cancel is a U.S. Naval Academy graduate with nearly 25 years of service in U.S. Naval helicopter aviation, including division officer, executive officer and instructor tours. She also served as the Officer-In-Charge for an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle detachment in Afghanistan, providing real-time decisional information for U.S. forces in the theater.

“Capt. Cancel, you have an incredible team of Sailors, Soldiers and partners in this room,” Collins said. “I am excited to see you operate in such a dynamic environment. I know our relationship with Djibouti and all of our partners here will continue to thrive as you stand the watch.”

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