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    1-130th “Panthers” Attack Battalion Welcomes New Commander

    1-130th “Panthers” Attack Battalion Welcomes New Commander

    Photo By Sgt. Hannah Tarkelly | Command Sgt. Maj. Kirpal Barrientos presents a gift to outgoing commander, Lt. Col....... read more read more



    Story by Capt. Patrick Montandon 

    449th Combat Aviation Brigade

    MORRISVILLE, NC – North Carolina Army National Guard Lt. Col. James L. Bond assumed command of the 1-130th Attack Battalion, 449th Combat Aviation Brigade, in place of Lt. Col. Mark A. Vanveldhuizen during a change of command ceremony at the Army Aviation Support Facility #1 in Morrisville on January 7, 2023. The battalion continued to progress as an elite Apache unit during Vanveldhuizen’s two-year command. The battalion is prepared for continued local, national, and international aviation operations under Bond’s leadership.

    Col Benny Collins, Commander of the 449th Combat Aviation Brigade recognized the dedication and competence of both the outgoing and incoming commanders.

    “Both Lt. Col. Vanveldhuizen and Lt. Col. Bond have deployed to combat missions in this battalion. They both have extensive resumes as leaders,” said Collins.

    Outgoing commander, Lt. Col. Vanveldhuizen joined the military in 1996 and has been with the “Panther” battalion since 2005, deploying twice in leadership roles.

    “I want to thank the Panther Soldiers for everything you do, for stepping up to every challenge, for inspiring me as a leader, and for teaching me so many things over the last couple years,” said Vanveldhuizen. “Make no mistake, there is no amount of money in the world that can buy the privilege of being a value-added member of the Panthers.”

    Vanveldhuizen spoke of the “magic” of flying as he leaves command of the aviation unit.

    “It’s interesting, when one of our helicopters flies overhead, we all tend to look up, and keep looking, almost like it’s the first time we’ve watched one fly. Even the pilots do it. There’s a kind of magic to it,” said Vanveldhuizen. He went on to describe the many unseen tasks and parts working together to ensure a successful flight. “The team of teams that is the Panthers, works in concert, with a focus on precision and excellence, accomplishing much more than the sum of your parts. When it all comes together, it looks magical, similar to the Apache flying through the sky.”

    Vanveldhuizen closed by speaking to Bond’s ability to successfully lead the battalion. “I know you will offer the Panthers the absolute best leadership in the coming years,” said Vanveldhuizen.

    Vanveldhuizen continues to serve full-time as the Deputy J3 for the North Carolina National Guard and will transition to the State Counter Drug Officer role for drill weekends.

    Incoming commander, Lt. Col. Bond entered the North Carolina National Guard in 1999 and offers a wealth of aviation experience as the incoming commander. “I am humbled and honored by this opportunity,” Bond said. “I pledge to you that the Panthers will remain ready and responsive for both when the State and Nation calls.”

    Bond has held many assignments in aviation including two company commands, Battalion Task Force Executive Officer, Brigade Operations Officer and most recently the Deputy State Army Aviation Officer for Joint Force Headquarters – North Carolina. He serves full-time as Commander of the Army Aviation Support Facility #1.

    The 1-130th Attack Battalion is assigned to 449th Combat Aviation Brigade, North Carolina National Guard and headquartered in Morrisville, North Carolina.



    Date Taken: 01.07.2023
    Date Posted: 01.07.2023 14:29
    Story ID: 436393
    Location: MORRISVILLE, NC, US 

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