Releasing the reins, still in the saddle
December 4, 2013
HEADQUARTERS, U.S. ARMY ALASKA, Fort Wainwright, Alaska -- The 6th Squadron, 17th Cavalry Regiment at Fort Wainwright, Alaska hosted a change of command ceremony December 3. The ceremony welcomed the new commander, Lt. Col. Matthew F Ketchum and honored the outgoing commander, Lt. Col. Adam w. Lange and his wife, Capt. Brandi Lange, an Army nurse assigned to Medical Department Activities-Alaska.
The U.S. Army Aviation Task Force Commander, Col. Nicholas Snelson presented the outgoing commander with a Meritorious Service Medal and his wife with the Lady of Loreto award. Although Lt. Col. Lange is relinquishing the reins of 6-17 CAV, he will remain here at Fort Wainwright, filling the role as deputy commanding officer for U.S. Army Alaska.
"Leaving the unit that has sacrificed so much, negotiating obstacles such as equipment shortages, funding challenges and forcing a change in mindset back to a conventional training focus," said Lange, "was not easy. It was very difficult and stressful, but my time as commander with the troops and leaders was well worth it."
Capt. Lange, will remain at Fort Wainwright as well, until they are both eligible for a move to their next assignment. "We do not really care the location or duty assignment," said Brandi Lange. "As long as we are together and can be there with one another is the big thing for us."
"He was here for a year before I arrived to Alaska," she said. "It is challenging being the wife of a Soldier, but when you're a Soldier too, it adds to the challenges and stresses."
Lt. Col. Lange will now step in as the new Deputy Commanding Officer for U.S. Army Alaska. There won't be much time off for him before moving to the north side of Ladd Army airfield to the new office, he has the rest of the day off and will start tomorrow.
"The new assignment will force me to learn new things and meet units and leaders throughout the Fairbanks North Star Community," he said. "Local leaders, Northern Warfare Training Center, and other things on the commanding general's radar that I have not dealt with or been involved in, will certainly be my main focus as the DCO."
The unit recently completed an aerial gunnery live-fire exercise, in preparation of a National Training Center rotation and future Korean deployment. "The conditions set and the training, maintenance and leadership from Lt. Col. Lange," said Col. Snelson, "have set this unit up for success."
"What's the best thing about being a Cav squadron commander?" Lt. Col Lange asked. "Everything."