104th Fighter Wing Hosts Change of Command March 2, 2013

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On Saturday, March 2 at 2:00 p.m., the 104th Fighter Wing at Barnes Air National Guard Base in Westfield will host a change of command ceremony where Col. James J. Keefe will assume command of the fighter wing from Brig. Gen. Robert T. Brooks Jr.

Following nearly five years as the commander, Brig. Gen. Brooks was recently promoted and assigned to the Joint Force Headquarters Staff, to a future post as the Assistant Adjutant General-Air. Col Keefe will be named the 15th Wing Commander, following a five year tour as the Vice Wing Commander.

A combat Fighter Pilot, Col. Keefe is a recent graduate from the prestigious Naval War College in Newport Rhode Island. During his military career, he has served in many leadership positions to include serving as the 131st Fighter Squadron commander where he flew the A-10 attack aircraft at Barnes.

"I am honored to serve as the new wing commander," said Col. James J. Keefe."Brig. Gen. Brooks has in entrusted in me a very talented and capable Wing, with a long-history of providing outstanding contributions to the nation--and the community here in Western Massachusetts."

During the event, there will be three additional changes of command. Maj. Michael Dibrindisi will assume command of the 104th Maintenance Squadron from Lt. Col. Christian Bigelow who has been appointed the Deputy Maintenance Group Commander. Lt. Col. Jeffry Blake will accept command of the 131st Fighter Squadron from Lt. Col. Alex Haldopoulos, who will accept the 104th Operations Group from Col. Kenneth Lambrich--selected as the new Vice Wing Commander.