By Emily Baker

Killeen Daily Herald

FORT HOOD The man who orchestrated the capture of one of the 20th centurys most infamous dictators bid farewell to his command Tuesday as a new leader took the helm of the 1st Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division.

Though he considers the success of Operation Red Dawn which resulted in the seizure of Saddam Hussein, Iraqs former leader a career highlight, Col. James B. Hickey said working with the brigades soldiers was the biggest honor of the last two years.

Im proud of these soldiers, said Hickey, who heads to Alexandria, Va., for an assignment at the Institute for Defense Analysis. My entire service with (the brigade) has been particularly poignant.

Hickey commanded the brigade through a yearlong Operation Iraqi Freedom deployment. While in Iraq from April 2003 to April 2004, the brigade participated in more than 1,000 raids that resulted in the capture of 5,000 enemy insurgents, including the countrys former dictator, and the destruction of 22 million pounds of enemy munitions. For the accomplishments, the brigade on Tuesday was presented with the Valorous Unit Award.

The brigade is one of the most lethal combat units in our Army, said Maj. Gen. James D. Thurman, commander of the 4th Infantry.

Col. James F. Pasquarette took command of the brigade and said he was speechless about assuming the responsibility.

Im not sure whos happier today me or Michael Jackson, Pasquarette said, referring to the pop singers Monday acquittal of nearly a dozen felony charges. The remark drew raucous laughter from the assembled crowd.

Also during the change of command ceremony, Lt. Col. Craig A. Osborne took over leadership of the 1st Battalion, 22nd Infantry Regiment from Lt. Col. Steven D. Russell, and Lt. Col. Michael W. Snow succeeded Lt. Col. Daryl Gore as commander of the 4th Support Battalion.

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