1st Battalion 22nd Infantry
1st Battalion Change of Command
by Lon Oakley, as printed in the 22nd Infantry Regiment Society Newsletter Issue 03-09
It was a warm and windy morning
on the prairies of Central Texas as the 1st Battalion 22nd
conducted a Change of Command. Events took place Wednesday June 17th as family; friends and fellow soldiers
gathered on Fort Hood's Cameron Field to witness LTC Matthew G. Elledge relinquish command to LTC Clay Padgett.
This will be the last change of command for the l/22nd Infantry at Fort Hood, Texas as they continue relocating
to Fort Carson, Colorado to join other elements of the 4th Infantry Division at that installation.
Guest of Honor and keynote
speaker Colonel Ted Martin, Commander 1st Brigade Combat Team 4th
(Mechanized) conducted the event while Major Mark Thompson, Executive Officer for the l/22nd Infantry Battalion,
served as Commander of Troops. Other dignitaries at the event included Major General Jeffery Hammond,
Commanding General 4th Infantry Division, Brigadier General Bill Grimsley, Assistant Division Commander,
Ms. Jeanne Isdale of Harker Heights, Texas (adopted "mom" for the deployed Regulars)
and LTC(R) Lon Oakley representing the 22nd Infantry Regiment Society.
Martin spoke of Elledge's
courage, leadership and dedication to his troops and their
families at home
during the two deployments on Operation Iraqi Freedom during his 27 months in command. In turn,
Elledge praised his soldiers for their professionalism and willingness to make the lives of the Iraqi people better
during their time "in country." LTC Elledge will assume a position with the United States Southern Command
and commented on his desire to attend future reunions of the 22nd Infantry Regiment.
New commander LTC Clay Padgett
is a 1992 graduate from Tarleton State University in
He was commissioned as an Infantry officer and in his initial assignment served with the 1st Battalion,
21st Infantry Regiment in the 25th Infantry Division (Light) at Schofield Barracks, Hawaii.
He later completed the Infantry Officer Advanced Course at Fort Benning, Georgia and spent two years
as the Assistant Professor of Military Science at Oklahoma State University. In 1999, Padgett was assigned
to the 1st Cavalry Division at Fort Hood, Texas. He commanded B Company 2nd Battalion, 5th Cavalry Regiment
and later served as the Aide-de-Camp for the Commanding General of the 1st Cav until June 2002.
After completion of Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas in 2004, Padgett was assigned
to United States Army Europe (USAREUR) in support of Operation Enduring Freedom and later
Operation Iraqi Freedom (GIF). He also served on GIF with the 1st Battalion 26th Infantry as Operation Officer
and Executive Officer until 2007. In 2008 LTC Padgett served as the Executive Officer for 2nd Brigade 1st Infantry Division
and later as Deputy Commanding Officer for the 172nd Infantry Brigade until redeploying from Iraq in February 2009.
LTC Padgett has also graduated from Air Assault, Airborne and Ranger Schools during his career.
"It's a great day for me and my family," said Padgett during his welcoming remarks and commented on his great honor
in taking over a unit with the long and proud history that the l/22nd Infantry has experienced.
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