NEWS | Sept. 14, 2021

DCO takes charge of the 138th Field Artillery Brigade

By Capt. Michael Reinersman 138th Field Artillery Public Affairs

The 138th Field Artillery Brigade honored Army Col. Andrew Bates as he relinquished command to his deputy commanding officer, Army Lt. Col. Steve Mattingly, during a change of command ceremony Sept. 12, at Brigade Headquarters in Lexington, Ky.
 
The 138th commands battalions in Lexington, Harrodsburg, and Glasgow.
 
Brig. Gen. Robert Larkin, assistant adjutant general for Kentucky, presided over the ceremony and passed the colors from Bates to Mattingly.
 
Larkin thanked Bates for his successes as commander and congratulated Mattingly for his assumption of brigade commander. 
 
“Col. Bates quickly led from the front, protecting freedom of expression and deterring major violence or destruction [in Louisville],” said Larkin, as he turned directly towards Bates. “And, despite the virus, your troops continue to fight the pandemic in supporting our numerous missions set at hospitals and work around the state.”
 
Just days after assuming command in September 2020, Bates commanded Task Force Thunder with elements from across the state to help maintain law and order during the civil disturbance in Louisville. 
 
During his farewell speech, Col. Bates thanked leadership, Soldiers and family, and reflected on his time as commander.
 
 “Fortunately, I inherited a great unit that was ready to go, and the Soldiers did a great job carrying out my intent to be professional, be polite, and be alert in Louisville,” said Bates. “Commanding the 138th has been the greatest honor of my career.”
 
Bates went on to express his gratitude for the brigade's efforts to safely train during the pandemic.
 
“The staff did a great job by creatively meeting our requirements in a socially distanced environment,” said Bates. “Particularly, conducting periodic health assessments and annual trainings that required a lot of planning and preparation; and those events went as efficiently and smoothly as possible.” 
 
During the ceremony, Command Sgt. Maj. David Miller presented Bates with a framed 138th FAB guidon to remember his service.
 
 Bates will assume command of the newly formed 38th Division Artillery at its temporary headquarters in Louisville, Ky. 
 
“There is no leader any more invested in the success of the 138th and Kentucky's artillery than Mattingly,” said Larkin. 
 
The deputy commanding officer is a core member of the brigade command group. After serving two years as the DCO in the 138th, Mattingly is well aware of the opportunity and tasks to come while commanding the brigade. 
 
“I have devoted the majority of my adult life in service to this Brigade, so it is not an honor that I take lightly," said Mattingly. “This is my ‘get to’ job, and I am so excited to go to work for this Brigade.”
 
Mattingly started his military career as an enlisted Soldier in 1998 as a forward observer. In August of 2002, he received his commission as a second lieutenant through Officer Candidate School.
 
During his 23 years of military service, he has held numerous command, staff, and full-time positions in the Kentucky National Guard.
 
In 2007, he was commander of Bravo Battery, 2nd Battalion, 138th Field Artillery while deployed to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
 
Mattingly is a native of Bardstown, Kentucky, and a graduate
of Eastern Kentucky University. He resides there with his wife and four children.
 

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