New commander named for 122nd

INDIANAPOLIS (WANE) – Col. Patrick R. Renwick will take over as commander of the Fort Wayne-headquartered 122nd Fighter Wing commander effective Sept. 13, Indiana National Guard Adjutant General Maj. Gen. R. Martin Umbarger announced Wednesday.

Renwick succeeds Col. David Augustine, who has commanded the 122nd since January 2011.

“This is a dream come true for me. I’m extremely excited to be here up in Fort Wayne and take charge of the 122nd Fighter Wing. I think we’ve got a great future. We’ve got a great legacy that’s deep in tradition and I really appreciate the confidence General Umbarger’s shown in me to take the mantle. I will not disappoint,” Colonel Renwick said.

Renwick, a Marshall, Illinois resident, currently serves as the vice commander of the 181st Intelligence Wing, which is headquartered in Terre Haute. Officials said Renwick is rated as a command pilot with more than 3,000 total hours, 148 combat hours and is qualified in the F-16, A-10, T-37 and T-38. He got his start in the military 25 years ago when he joined the Air Force, and has held nearly ten positions since then.

“I think everything leading up to this moment prepares you for anything in life. You take your experiences. You apply that towards the situation at hand and you do the best you can. That’s all anybody can ask. I wanted to lead the men and women of the 122nd Fighter Wing, the airmen here. I wanted to take them to the next level and I think as a team, we certainly can do that,” Renwick said.

Colonel Renwick has been on more than a dozen assignments, and also spent seven months in Iraq.

“I tell you what Lt. Renwick would look at me right now and say boy, you sure have gone a long ways. It is an honor and a privilege. I can’t explain how much in words how much it means to be entrusted to take charge of the fighter wing. This is every young fighter pilots dream,” Renwick said.

Colonel Renwick just got to Fort Wayne on Thursday afternoon, but is already busy making plans for the future.

“I’m sitting down with key staff and getting a feel for the place, soaking it all in, letting them tell me about their story and their legacy,” Renwick said.

Colonel Renwick also addressed any possible concerns regarding a BRAC for the 122nd.

“I really want to concentrate on moving ourselves forward. Being the best unit that we can that’s the best way to stave off any kind of BRAC is to do the mission you’ve been assigned to the best of your ability, and continue on while planning for the future. I know if they got tasked with anything that this unit would be able to accomplish it. I think preparation is key for any of these events.  Making sure that you’re proving yourself to be a value to the taxpayers and that you’re doing the best job that you have assigned to you and being ready for all missions that you have, both state, local, and for the federal side,” Renwick said.

The new commander will be spending time in his office, as well as the sky. Renwick has flown both the A-10 and the F-16, and said he’s looking forward to getting back in the pilot’s seat.

“I’m going to go back to my first love in the air force and that was the A-10. In 1990 was the first time I got to sit in that mighty airplane and I’m tickled pink. I look forward to getting back in it. I’ve already made a few phone calls. We’ve got our training folks looking into what our options are for getting back into retraining. I task them to present me with courses of action which get me in there sooner rather than later. I think it’s important to get qualified in the airplane and to move forward from there. I can’t wait,” Renwick said.

The man who appointed Colonel Renwick, General Umbarger, said he has what it takes to lead the more than 1100 airmen on the base.

““All you have to do is sit down with Pat Renwick for just a little bit and talk to him about his career. It doesn’t take long till you see a person and the person comes out is a very humble person and a team player. It doesn’t take long till you see The type of guy you’d like to have to be your buddy, to be your wingman. Puts the mission first, puts the organization first above his own self interests, taking care of those airmen that he’s responsible for, taking care of those people to his left and right, service above self type guy. I don’t think I’ve seen a person that has not had more difficult assignments that prepared them to be a wing commander than what he’s had in his career. He’s the right guy at the right time to lead Fort Wayne,” Umbarger said.

General Umbarger also said it’s important to honor the hard work of Colonel David Augustine.

“Col. Augustine is an outstanding leader with a long and distinguished career of service and sacrifice. His commitment to his airmen, the Fort Wayne community, our Hoosier State, and the nation is second to none. Dave leaves an enviable legacy of achievement at the 122nd. It was kind of a shock to all of us that this was going to happen so quickly with his retirement, but it was the best for he and his family. Colonel Augustine has lived and been in many different states throughout his career, and he and his wife have told me how much they’ve fallen in love with Fort Wayne. I think you’re going to see he and his family stay in the Fort Wayne area. I can’t thank Colonel Augustine enough for his wonderful leadership and everything he’s done there, including his wife and their four girls. I think it speaks a lot to the community and a lot to the Fort Wayne people that here’s a guy that could go to about three or four states that he’s served in, but he wants to stay there,” Umbarger said.

General Umbarger also said he’s grateful for the support of the Fort Wayne community the last eleven years.

“We could not get better support from any community than what we’ve gotten from Mayor Henry and the community base, community council. I could go on and on. Every time I come up and visit Fort Wayne, I almost feel like I’m going home myself and how patriotic and family that whole community is, so I think we’re very fortunate here in Indiana to have that city of Fort Wayne in our state,” Umbarger said.

Colonel Renwick is the 12th commander of the 122nd Fighter Wing. He and his wife Rachel have two daughters.

“I look forward to moving my wife, Rachel, my lovely bride of 23 years.  She’s excited. I’m excited, and I can’t wait to be part of the community here and part of the Blacksnakes of the 122nd Fighter Wing,” Renwick said.

The 122nd Fighter Wing is scheduled to hold a formal ceremony Saturday, Sept. 13, during which Renwick will assume command from Augustine.

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