Gargas new commander of 1140th Engineer Battalion

Thursday, October 27, 2011
Brig. Gen. Randy Alewel (left), commander of the 35th Engineer Brigade, passes the battalion' guidon to Lt. Col. Edward Gargas to symbolize the transfer of authority and responsibility.

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. -- Lt. Col. Edward Gargas, of Dexter, has been appointed the new commander for the 1140th Engineer Battalion in Cape Girardeau.

The battalion has six units in seven locations: Headquarters Company in Cape Girardeau, Forward Support Company in Cape Girardeau, 880th Engineer Haul Team in Perryville, 1138th Engineer Sapper Company in Farmington and Fredericktown, 220th Engineer Company in Festus, and 1438th Multi-Role Bridge Company in Macon and Kirksville.

During a ceremony, the battalion guidon was passed to Gargas to symbolize the transfer of authority and responsibility.

"I'm looking forward to the challenge of leading one of the best battalions in the state," said Gargas. "This battalion has an impressive legacy and I pledge to lead our officers, noncommissioned officers, and Soldiers towards and beyond the goals set by our brigade."

Brig. Gen. Randy Alewel, commander of the 35th Engineer Brigade, said his expectations for the battalion to continue moving forward are in good hands with Gargas.

"Lt. Col. Gargas was chosen because he's a go to and get it done type of gentleman and officer," said Alewel. "I've got all the confidence in him to lead the battalion and take it to the next level."

Gargas' military experience and history with the battalion also made him the right choice, said Alewel.

Gargas enlisted in the Missouri National Guard in 1987 with the 1140th Engineer Battalion. Over the years he has had leadership positions with several of the battalion's units, including platoon leader, executive officer, commander, and operations officer. He deployed with the battalion in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2004-2005.

"I'm glad and honored I was selected to command the battalion I grew up in," said Gargas.

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