News: Falcons say farewell to brigade commander
Story by Sgt. Kissta DiGregorio
FORT BRAGG, N.C. — The 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, held a Brigade change of command ceremony, July 12, where Col. Timothy J. McAteer relinquished command of 2BCT “Falcons Brigade” to Col. Patrick J. Hynes.
Prior to the ceremony, Brig. Gen. Charles Flynn, special assistant to the commanding general, United States Army Forces Command, presented McAteer’s wife, Shon McAteer, with a Shield of Sparta award for faithful and significant service to the infantry. Brig. Gen. Flynn, on behalf of the Secretary of the Army, also presented Col. McAteer with the Legion of Merit award for his dedicated service to the Brigade.
During the ceremony, McAteer passed the brigade colors to Flynn, who in turn passed the colors to Hynes, symbolizing the exchange of command from the outgoing to the incoming commander.
McAteer has served as the 2BCT commander for more than two years. He took command of the Falcons during their deployment to Haiti in 2010 in support of Operation Unified Response, where paratroopers distributed much-needed humanitarian aid to the people of Haitian people. He led the unit during Operation New Dawn in 2011, ensuring a safe withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq. A native of San Antonio, Texas, McAteer will be taking part in a yearlong Army fellowship at Yale University.
“I have been surrounded by extremely driven and committed paratroopers,” McAteer said of his time in command. He added, “I will miss being a part of a brigade combat team and the 82nd Airborne Division, but I have a great deal of pride knowing I served in this brigade.”
Hynes is no stranger to the Falcon Brigade. A native of New Providence, N.J., Hynes commanded the 1st Battalion, 325th Airborne Infantry Regiment, 2BCT, for two years, to include OUR. Hynes said he is excited to be back with the Falcon Brigade, and plans to continue 2BCT’s legacy of rising to the challenge and being able to complete any mission.