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Aviation brigade relinquishes authority

Story by Sgt. Jennifer J. Eidson
22nd Mobile Public Affaris Detachment

FORWARD OPERATING BASE SPEICHER, Iraq -- The 42nd Infantry Division officially took over the aircraft support mission for the Multi-National Division North Central from the 1st Infantry Division during a Feb. 2 ceremony, at Forward Operation Base Speicher.
     As Soldiers from the 42nd Aviation Brigade, and the 4th Aviation Brigade, 1st ID looked on, Col. Walter M. Golden, 4th Aviation Brigade commander, transferred authority to Lt. Col. Mark F. Burke, commander of the 42nd Aviation Brigade.
    Maj. Gen. John R.S. Batiste, Task Force Danger commander, said during the ceremony that he has no doubt in the abilities of the newly appointed unit and believes the incoming Soldiers will be equally successful with their mission in Iraq.
    "I am confident that you will continue to uphold the incredibly high standards," said Batiste. "You have already made a name for yourself since you arrived and you will continue to provide world class aerial support."
     Golden told the Task Force Liberty Soldiers that the transition from his unit to theirs has been a seamless one due to the efforts of both units.
     "You are off to a great start establishing a commendable reputation for aviation mission support," Golden said. He added that the 42nd would have a good year because of "the amount and quality of aviation operations" the two units jointly conduct."
     Burke agreed. He said the work the 4th Aviation Brigade has already accomplished would allow them to better do their job as they take over their mission.
     "We have been preparing for this mission since this last May, and now we are fully prepared thanks to the efforts of the 4th Aviation Brigade," he told to the brigade's Soldiers. "You can be sure that all your efforts will not be in vain."
     The incoming aviation brigade's Soldiers who are deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom III, include members of 1st Battalion, 150th Aviation Regiment; 1st Battalion, 17th Cavalry Regiment; the 642nd Aviation Support Battalion, and Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 42nd Aviation Brigade.

Text for release and opsec review provided by the 1st Infantry Division Public Affairs Office. For more information, please contact 1ID PAO at

Release #A050206m

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