Family members, friends and fellow soldiers said goodbye Monday to a former Fort Hood battalion commander who led 1st Cavalry Division troopers in Iraq during the final months of the Iraq War
Col. Andrew Poznick died March 20 at his off-post residence near Carlisle Barracks, Pa., where he was scheduled to soon join the faculty at the Army War College, officials said. He was 45 years old.
The cause of death was a gunshot wound, and no foul play is suspected, said Charles Hall, the county coroner who was assigned to the case.
At Fort Hood, Poznick commanded 1st Battalion, 12th Cavalry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, and deployed with the battalion to Iraq in February 2011, returning in December of that year. Poznick, who had deployed to Iraq previously, and his soldiers, were among the last U.S. troops to leave Iraq after more than eight years of war there. The final American troops left the country on Dec. 18, 2011.
On Monday, the chapel at Carlisle Barracks was filled with family members and soldiers who had served with Poznick, including Col. John Woodward, the current commander of 1st Cavalry Division’s 3rd Brigade Combat Team.
According to Poznick’s obituary, his proudest moment in the military was leading the Chargers of 1st Battalion, 12th Cavalry during their deployment to Iraq.
“It provided me and a lot of soldiers with closure,” Poznick said when he returned to Fort Hood on Dec. 14, 2011. “I’m glad our soldiers accomplished what we set out to do.”
Poznick joined the Army in 1993 as an infantry officer after graduating from the University of Auburn University in Alabama. His Army awards include the Bronze Star Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Medal with Silver Oak Leaf Cluster, Army Commendation Medal with two Oak Leaf Clusters, Army Achievement Medal with three Oak Leaf Clusters, Joint Meritorious Unit Award, Valorous Unit Award, Meritorious Unit Citation with Oak Leaf Cluster, Army Superior Unit Award, National Defense Service Medal with Campaign Star, Iraqi Campaign Medal with three Campaign Stars, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Kuwait Defense Service Medal, the Humanitarian Service Medal, the Combat Infantryman Badge, Ranger Tab, Master Parachutist and Air Assault Badge. Andrew was the recipient of the Legionnaire Level of Order of St. Maurice.
Poznick’s survivors include his wife of 23 years, Trish Jane Pellecchia Poznick and their two children, John Thomas and Emma Jane, of Carlisle; his mother, Hermina Handy and her husband, retired Col. Lynn Handy of Harker Heights.