Hometown Military News: Aug. 5, 2016

Neil Putnam
Lt. Col. Neil Putnam, of Chatham addresses members of the Illinois National Guard’s 2nd Battalion, 130th Infantry Regiment during a change-of-command ceremony, July 21 at Camp Atterbury, Indiana. After serving as the battalion’s commander for two years, Putnam relinquished command to Maj. David Pond, a 29-year veteran of the Illinois National Guard and a resident of Streator, Illinois. Putnam will move to a position with United States Special Operations Command. (U.S. Army Photo by Staff Sgt. James McDonnough, 139th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment)

Hometown Military News for August 5, 2016:

Illinois Infantry Battalion welcomes new commander

CAMP ATTERBURY, Ind. – After serving two years as the commander of the Illinois National Guard’s 2nd Battalion, 130th Infantry Regiment, based in Marion, Lt. Col. Neil Putnam, of Chatham, relinquished command of the unit to Maj. David Pond of Streator.

Putnam said he is grateful for the two years he commanded the battalion, which falls under the Illinois National Guard’s 33rd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, based in Urbana.

“I feel very appreciative to have been trusted with the command of the battalion – what I feel to be the best battalion in the Illinois National Guard,” Putnam said. “The sense of family, dedication and professionalism and commitment to service is unequaled and something that I will forever take with me when I go down to SOCOM (United States Special Operations Command) and my future assignments.”

Command Sgt. Maj. Shane Lammers, of Champaign, the noncommissioned officer in charge of the 2-130, and the senior enlisted advisor to the commander, said Pond is a proper replacement for Putnam.

“Lt. Col. Putnam has been fantastic,” Lammers said. “We couldn’t have asked for a better commander and I’m also very exited about Maj. Pond coming in. If you look at where we are going in the future with operational readiness, he is going to position this battalion so we are ready and willing. Lt. Col. Putnam put us on this path and Maj. Pond is going to make sure we stay on it.”
Pond said he appreciated the opportunity to lead.

“I’m looking forward to taking over the 130th Infantry as we look forward to two very challenging years,” Pond said. “I think it’s a great time and a great opportunity and I appreciate the leadership’s confidence and faith in my ability to do the job.”

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