Langley takes over Marine mission in Europe, Africa following Neary’s relief
By JOHN VANDIVER | STARS AND STRIPES Published: November 3, 2020
STUTTGART, Germany — Maj. Gen. Michael E. Langley, one of only seven Black general officers in the Marine Corps, assumed command Tuesday of Marine missions in Europe and Africa, the service announced.
Langley replaced Maj. Gen. Stephen Neary, who was relieved of command last month while the service investigates allegations he used a racial slur that denigrates Black people in front of his troops at Marine Corps Forces Europe and Africa headquarters in Boeblingen, Germany.
“MARFOREUR/AF is a varsity team and I’m excited to lead some of the most professional Marines in the Corps,” Langley said in a statement. “Together we will continue to assure our Allies and partners, deter our enemies, and maintain the high standards expected of us as Marines and Sailors in the finest fighting institution in the world.”
A native of Shreveport, La., Langley previously served as deputy commander at Fleet Marine Force Atlantic and led troops on multiple deployments to Afghanistan. He graduated from the University of Texas at Arlington, where he majored in information systems analysis. He was commissioned as a second lieutenant in 1985, according to his official biography.
He replaces Neary and becomes MARFOREUR/AF’s first African American commander at a time when the Corps has been under scrutiny for a lack of diversity in its senior ranks.
In August, The New York Times reported that of 82 Marine generals today, there were just six Black brigadier generals and one Black major general.