BAUMHOLDER, Germany – Soldiers with 170th Infantry Brigade Combat Team bid farewell to four battalion commanders and three command sergeants major and welcomed their replacements during a consolidated ceremony at the Hall of Champions June 5.
The outgoing commanders and command sergeants majors will join the roughly 800 Bayonet soldiers leaving Baumholder per month as the brigade prepares for inactivation in October.
Col. Patrick Matlock, the 170th Infantry Brigade Combat Team commander, said the outgoing command teams had led their soldiers from the brigade’s activation in 2009 through a 12-month deployment to Afghanistan last year.
“You’ve been leaders in your formations and this community for three years. You’ve built great teams in your battalions, both with your soldiers and your families. You have trained to a very high standard, deployed, conducted operations in combat and returned your units home with honor and pride.
“For the past three months, you’ve executed your new mission responsibly and with care for your soldiers and families. We are grateful to have served with you and been on your team,” Matlock said.
Lt. Col. Dan Kelley relinquished command of 3rd Battalion, 4th Infantry Regiment to Maj. John Champy. Lt. Col. Matthew Eichburg relinquished command of 2nd Battalion, 18th Infantry Regiment to Maj. Albert Tabarez. Lt. Col. John O’Grady relinquished command of 1st Battalion, 84th Field Artillery Regiment to Maj. Matt Winters. Lt. Col. Erik D. Zetterstrom relinquished command of 40th Engineer Battalion, Task Force Ram to Maj. Gregory E. Turner.
Sgt. Maj. Michael Bartlett relinquished his responsibility as the command sergeant major of 3rd Battalion, 4th Infantry Regiment to 1st Sgt. Michael M. Harris. Command Sgt. Maj. Keith R. Whitcomb relinquished his responsibility as the command sergeant major of 40th Engineer Battalion to 1st Sergeant John R. McNerny. Command Sgt. Maj. Michael W. Williams Jr. relinquished his responsibility as the command sergeant major of 24th Brigade Support Battalion to Sgt. Maj. Shurn E. Smith.