NEBRASKA CITY – Among the 800 veterans honored at the Veteran’s Memorial Building in Nebraska City’s sesquicentennial event this weekend, is a tribute to the new brigade commander of America’s 101st Airborne Division.
Col. Derek Thomson, a graduate of Nebraska City High School who was commissioned at West Point Military Academy in 1995, took command of the 1st Brigade Combat Team during a change of command ceremony at Ft. Campbell, Ken., in August.
The Ft. Campbell Courier reports that Maj. General Andrew Poppas credited Col. Thomson for the talents he will bring to the Bastogne Bridgade.
Gen. Poppas: “These are uncertain times and it takes a steady hand of a combat proven leader. That is exactly what Derek is.”
Thomson also addressed his soldiers.
Thomson: “It is my deep honor to join your ranks and walk in your footsteps.
This brigade was created for one purpose and that is to bring overwhelming lethal force to those who wish to do us harm. This is the call that we commit ourselves to daily.”
His most recent duty assignment was at the U.S. Army Special Operations Command at Ft. Bragg.
He served as troop commander, squadron commander and division chief within the Directorate of Operations at Joint Special Operations Command.